David Wroe

David Wroe

David Wroe is national security correspondent for The Age and the Sydney Morning Herald in Canberra.

Illegal gun numbers a mystery, Senate inquiry finds

David Wroe Australian authorities have no firm idea how many illegal guns are in the country due to shortcomings in data collection, a Parliamentary inquiry has found.

Defence to buy two more of its workhorse C-17 transport planes

The RAAF will get two more C-17 transport planes.

David Wroe The RAAF will get two more of its much-loved workhorses – the C-17 transport planes that have lifted everything from ammunition to Kurds fighting the Islamic State terror group to food and...

US, Japan trust Australia more than they trust each other, survey finds

Japan plans to build its military strength.

David Wroe Americans and Japanese trust Australians more than they trust one another, according to a new survey.

Transgender military officer Cate McGregor defends friend Tony Abbott

Cate McGregor.

David Wroe Cate McGregor has a stinging message for Tony Abbott's more truculent critics: the Prime Minister deserves some credit for so publicly supporting her as the world's most senior transgender military...

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Military trauma cases set to rise, say defence chiefs

Chief of the Defence Force Mark Binskin.

David Wroe, Defence Correspondent Defence chiefs have acknowledged the rate of post-traumatic stress disorder among military personnel and veterans is likely to rise in the years ahead as cases slowly surface following major recent...

Prosecutions of foreign fighters hard, experts say as Labor's Matthew Gardiner returns home

Hard to charge: Matthew Gardiner has been detained at Darwin Airport.

David Wroe Leading lawyers say the case of Labor Party figure Matthew Gardiner – believed to have helped the Kurds in their fight against the Islamic State terror group – shows how hard prosecuting...

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2500 metadata 'cops' to search phone and internet records

Attorney-General Senator George Brandis limited the number of agencies who could access metadata to crucial crime-fighting and national security bodies.

David Wroe Police officers comprise the majority of people empowered to sign off on access to Australians' phone and internet records, Fairfax Media has found.

Bali nine: Joko Widodo too busy to talk to Tony Abbott about pair on death row

Preoccupied: Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Indonesian President Joko Widodo.

David Wroe Indonesian President Joko Widodo has been too busy to return Tony Abbott's phone call about the fate of the Bali Nine pair on death row, Jakarta's envoy in Australia has said.

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Julie Bishop looks to get Australia back on UN Security Council

Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop.

David Wroe, National Security Correspondent Australia is looking to get itself back on the United Nations Security Council just months after finishing a tumultuous two-year term that covered the MH17 crisis and the emergence of the Islamic...

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Another teen would-be jihadist stopped at Sydney Airport

David Wroe ASIO and federal police are investigating a 17-year-old teenager who was stopped by counter-terrorism agents at Sydney Airport from trying to reach the Middle East – the latest in the growing...

Kevin Andrews warns of growing regional submarine forces

Defence Minister Kevin Andrews.

David Wroe Half the world's submarines will be in Australia's region by 2030, Defence Minister Kevin Andrews will warn on Wednesday in a speech underscoring the gravity of choosing the right boats for the...

Cyclone Pam aftermath: Residents struggle to rebuild battered Port Vila

Foreign Affairs Ainister Julie Bishop hugs Christelle Paoka at East Vila school, which is being repaired by an Australian Urban Search and Rescue team.

David Wroe In Port Vila, the clean-up has begun. Two-thirds of the city has power and the supermarkets are open, but fresh food is scarce.

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop vows continuing support in Vanuatu after Cyclone Pam

Relief: Bishop hugs Australian volunteers Mae Eldridge, left and Nina Kerridge rescued from Ambae Island.

David Wroe Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has vowed Australia will remain in Vanuatu for "as long as it takes" to help the country recover from a devastating cyclone, as she confirmed that all Australians are...

Probes of journalists' communications records 'rare', police say

Attorney-General Senator George Brandis says journalists are not the target of the government metadata retention plans.

David Wroe Police have confirmed they have accessed journalists' communications records to investigate leaks despite the Abbott government's insistence that journalists are not the target of its new data...

Cyclone Pam: Australia steps up aid to Vanuatu as 'widespread devastation' becomes clear

Foreign Affairs minister Julie Bishop and Health minister Sussan Ley announce Australian assistance to Vanuatu at Parliament House on Tuesday.

David Wroe Australian reconnaissance planes scouring the remote south of Vanuatu have spotted "widespread devastation", Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has revealed as the government stepped up relief to the...

Aid arrives on cyclone-devastated Vanuatu as death toll remains unclear

Vanuatu residents begin to clear up after Cyclone Pam roared through the Pacific nation.

David Wroe The Abbott government has flagged a possible further expansion of Australia's relief to cyclone-battered Vanuatu as aid groups warned the Pacific island nation would likely need years of...

Tony Abbott backs second push for mandatory five-year jail terms for gun traffickers


David Wroe and Amy Corderoy Prime Minister Tony Abbott plans to reintroduce legislation that Labor rebuffed in the Senate just last month.

Xenophon pours water on government's latest pension proposal

Independent Senator Nick Xenophon will talk to the government about the pension, but is not keen on the compromise.

David Wroe Social Services Minister Scott Morrison faces an uphill battle to win Senate support for a cut to the pension indexation rate with key crossbencher Nick Xenophon already casting doubt on the...

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Australian sends aid to cyclone-ravaged Vanuatu

Cyclone Pam hits Vanuatu on Friday,

David Wroe, Defence Correspondent Five RAAF planes have been deployed as part of a major relief effort to cyclone-devastated Vanuatu that also includes a Australian aid package of $5 million.

Ex-jihadists could be used to counter extremist message

David Wroe Reformed jihadists who have been to the Middle East and returned home disillusioned could be used as poster boys and girls to combat the tidal wave of extremist propaganda on the internet.