Pentagon to Repeal 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' Policy

Washington, March 3 (DPA) US Defence Secretary Robert Gates Tuesday ordered the establishment of a working group to formulate a plan for repealing a law that bans gays from openly serving in the military.

Gates announced Feb 2 that he planned to move forward with ending the 1993-enacted "don't ask, don't tell" policy that permitted gays to serve but only if they kept their sexuality secret.

Gates has named the Pentagon general counsel, Jeh Johnson, and the commander of the US Army in Europe, General Carter Ham, as the co-chairs of the working group.

They are tasked with making recommendations on how to repeal the law and determine the impact a change in policy could have on military operations and day-to-day life. Their report is due Dec 1.

More than 10,000 service members have been expelled from the military since the 1993 law, after their sexuality was discovered. Gay rights advocates have called the expulsions a violation of human rights, while other critics say the policy has deprived the Pentagon of talent.

President Barack Obama campaigned on a plan to repeal "don't ask, don't tell".

Gates has cautioned that any policy changes will be implemented at a slow pace to avoid distractions and disruptions in a military involved in multiple combat operations around the world.




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Title: Pentagon to Repeal 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' Policy

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