The Queensland Government has rubbished claims it’s left hundreds of ADF soldiers trapped in Dubai awaiting approvals to return home following the rescue mission in Afghanistan.
Reports have circulated overnight that the the Australian Defence Force had requested to return to the Sunshine State under the same model that allowed the families of NRL players into the state but had heard nothing back from officials.
Queensland Health Minister Yvette D’Ath released a statement on Wednesday morning revealing the ADF personnel were always going to be permitted to enter the state.
ARTICLE CONTINUES AFTER THIS ADVERTISEMENT
“This has never been in any doubt,” Ms D’Ath said.
“Of course they can return to Queensland and quarantine in an appropriate location.”
The Minister said officials had been working with the ADF since last week and had communicated its support since then.
“The ADF notified us yesterday that they had secured an appropriate hotel and advised that they would submit a management plan today,” the Minister said.
“Our default position is to support this request.
“While the logistics of ensuring safe arrangements for returning ADF personnel and finding appropriate accommodation are complex, if anyone is good at logistics, it’s the ADF.
“Although the Commonwealth is constitutionally responsible for quarantine, we are ready to help in any way we can.”
It’s understood the ADF has chosen to quarantine at a location on the Gold Coast.
The personnel will be outside the international arrivals cap and they will still be subject to all quarantine and protective measures.