FOIA requestors A small number of Australian individuals, including Paul Dean and Grant Lavac in Melbourne, and myself in Adelaide, have been utilising the Australian Freedom of Information Act, (FOIA) to explore the extent, if any, to which Australian government departments […]
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A small number of Australian individuals, including Paul Dean and Grant Lavac in Melbourne, and myself in Adelaide, have been utilising the Australian Freedom of Information Act, (FOIA) to explore the extent, if any, to which Australian government departments and agencies, are engaged with the topic of Unidentified Aerial Phenomena” (UAP.)
FOIA UAP responses from the Australian Department of Defence have been mainly negative, getting a “no responsive documents” answer. With the exception being the discovery of a Department of Defence Chief of Air briefing paper for Departmental personnel attending Senate Estimates Committee hearings, due to one of Grant’s requests.
A new FOIA request
It is therefore, of interest that other Australian UAP researchers are submitting their own FOIA requests to the Australian goverment. Below, are details of one such request, and response from the Department of Defence. The individual who submitted the request wishes to remain anonymous, although I know their identity. They requested:
“…all official briefing slides, PowerPoints, images, footage, documents, reports, emails and letters from between the dates of of 1st January 2016 to 30th July 2022, that were exchanged between employees within the appropriate agency of the Australian Defence Force who is legally and/or contractually obligated to perform the function for government of undertaking:
The analysis of all or any data types derived from and associated with:
(i) the tracking of; and
(ii) the locating of; and
(iii) the coordination of the recovery of material debris associated with:
“Unidentified Aerospace-undersea Phenomena,” “UAP,” “Unidentified Aerial Phenomena,” and/or “Unidentified Flying Objects.”
all official briefing slides, PowerPoints, images, footage, documents, reports, emails and letters that were sent to and/or received from, any employees of the Australian Defence Force in liaison with the appropriate agency within government who function as the overseeing department(s) and/or program(s) and who is legally and/or contractually obligated, including private contractors, both foreign and domestic, to perform the function of government for the undertaking of:
(i) the analysis of all or any data types derived from and associated with:
(ii) the tracking of, and
(iii) the locating of, and
(iv) the coordination of the recovery of material debris associated with “Unidentified Aerospace-undersea Phenomena,” “UAP,” “Unidentified Aerial Phenomena,” “UFO,” and/or “Unidentified Flying Objects”
in which said briefing slides, PowerPoints, images, footage, reports, emails and letters are only associated with, pertain to, and/or specifically mention
(i) DOD policy on reporting;
(ii) *significant events/discussions” and
(iii) all case studies with official DOD oversight regarding: “Unidentified Aerospace-undersea Phenomena,” “UAP,” “Unidentified Aerial Phenomena,” and/or “Unidentified Flying Objects.”
* By UAP, this request refers to nothing other than Australian Defence Force official terminology for “Unidentified Aerial Phenomena” the meaning of such term is outlined in Section 1683(1) of the US National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal year 2022 (50 USC 3373(1) and is referred to below, in two separate declarations of a cognizance of UAP by RAAF personnel:
(1) RAAF Chief of Air Marshal Mel Hupfield, with the following comment “through professional curiosity I did look at some of the videos (referring to videos of UAP filmed by US Navy pilots and released to the public via The New York Times in 2017, to Senator Peter Whish-Wilson during Senate questioning.
(2) R J Denney, Air Vice-Marshal Head of Air Force Capability, in his published comment contained within his response to Mr Grant Lavac which are here quoted “Concerning Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP); “the topic of UAP or UFO;” and “The United States Office of the Director of National Intelligence Preliminary Assessment: Unidentified Aerial Phenomena.”
*By “significant events/discussisons,” I refer to nothing other than the “significant events/discussions” referred to by DOD in the official CAF brief content page, titled “Unidentified Aerial Phenomena” within Defence FOI 459/22/23 Item 1, document 1.”
The DOD response
I extract the relevant portions of the DOD response letter.
“3. I identified no document as matching the description of the request.”
“5. In making my decision, I had regard to…
“10. Accordingly I am satisfied that “all reasonable steps” have been taken to locate the document.”
11. With reference to the “Unidentified Aerospace-undersea Phenomena” component of the scope, I engaged Navy who advised they do not retain any such reports.
12. Joint Operations Command advise they are unaware of the term “Unidentified Aerospace-undersea Phenomena.” Further a definition was unable to be located via Google or the Australian Defence Glossary and as such Defence is unable to provide any information about the topic or locate any document in relation to it.
13. The Australian Space Operations Centre advised that they rely on unclassified sources that the applicant can potentially source, namely…”
14. Furthermore, Defence does not have a stand alone protocol for reporting or recording of UAP or UFOs. The Royal Australian Air Force ceased handling reports of UAP or UFO in 1996 after determining that there was no scientific or other compelling reason to continue to devote resources to the recording and investigation of UAP or UFO. It is a function no longer exercised by Defence and therefore, no documents will exist in Defence’s possession in relation to the subject matter.”
1. The DOD is clearly maintaining that they have no interest in the topic of UAP.
2. I wonder what the DOD is making of the increased rate of FOI enquries, re UAP?
3. One interesting comment, is that DOD FOI checked with Navy on the term “Unidentified Aerospace-undersea Phenomena.” I take the NAVY response that “they do not retain any such reports” to mean “they do not know of any such phenomena” not that they know of such reports, but do not (retain) keep them.”
4. Also, I checked the Australian Defence Glossary. It is a list of terms and definitions used by Defence; approved Defence terms for such things as “area of intelligence interest,” “end state,” and “master target list.” There are no entries under the letter U or elsewhere, for “Unidentified Aerial Phenomena” or “Unidentified Flying Objects” or any such equivalent terms.
5. In paragraph 14 of the DOD respones is “…no documents willl exist in Defence’s possession in relation to this subject matter.” However, Grant Lavac’s finding of the CAF DOD UAP briefing paper for personnel attending the Senate Estimates hearings in 2022, show that this statement is incorrect.
6. Thanks must go to the anonymous FOIA requestor, who submitted this latest FOIA request and received the response.
7. I would be interested in hearing from any blog reader who has also submitted a recent FOIA UAP request to any Australian government department, agency, or Minister. My encrypted email address is