Chief of Defence Staff to Review ‘Disturbing’ Sex Assault Allegations

Canada’s chief of defence staff, Gen. Tom Lawson, has announced to have launched an internal review to assess and report about the “disturbing” allegations in the Quebec news magazine report, L’actualité, which claim that sexual violence is tormenting the military. According to the report published after a months-long investigation, five people in the Canadian military community are sexually assaulted every day.

In response to the grave allegations, Defence Minister Rob Nicholson mentioned on Thursday that he is “deeply angered to learn of these alleged sexual assaults in the military.” According to Mr. Nicholson, “sexual misconduct of all kinds will not be tolerated within the Canadian Armed Forces and I have asked the Chief of Defence Staff to get to the bottom of these serious matters.”

Whereas, Gen. Lawson also called the article “disturbing” and disclosed to have directed an immediate internal review of the military’s workplace programs and policies. Gen. Lawson stated that “sexual assault is a crime” and “it is an abhorrent and corrosive act that goes against the entirety of our military ethos. I do not accept from any quarter that this is merely a part of military culture; it is not.” It was added that “sexual misconduct of any kind is not and will not be tolerated within the CAF, and this is a message that I reinforce throughout the chain of command” and so “we will pursue any and all allegations of sexual misconduct and we will protect complainants from reprisals.”

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