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Australia announces a $2b investment in special forces for military threats

CANBERRA, Australia - Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced a multibillion-dollar investment in new equipment for the nation's special forces.

Morrison on Monday announced that A$3 billion ($2.03 billion) will be invested in the special forces over 20 years in order to better respond to threats, including that of terrorism. Special forces are elite units of the Navy and Air Force.

Under the first stage of the plan, A$500 million will be invested in special operations capabilities.

"I've always said keeping Australians safe is my government's number one priority. That's why we're ensuring the men and women in our special forces have the equipment and training they need to succeed in their operations," Morrison said.

"Australian special forces undertake complex, highly demanding operations in high threat environments."

"Global threats will continue to evolve in ways which threaten Australia's interests. This funding will ensure our special forces have cutting edge capabilities to stay ahead of those who might threaten Australia's interests."

The investment in the special forces is part of a planned A$200 billion investment in Australia's military capabilities over the next decade, the largest peacetime investment in defense in Australian history.

"This commitment continues to pursue the special operations capability enhancements outlined in the Defence White Paper 2016." said the official statement on Monday.

"By 2020-21, we will have restored investment in defense to 2 percent of GDP," said the statement.

Linda Reynolds, Australia's Minister for Defence, said that the funding would be spent on equipment for the special forces.

It will be supplemented by 16 new special operations helicopters already announced by the Australian Defence Force, which will be delivered in 2022, according to The Australian report.

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