Home English News Pentagon promises ‘all appropriate action’ over nude photo scandal

Pentagon promises ‘all appropriate action’ over nude photo scandal

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“All appropriate action” is being taken to investigate a scandal over lewd photographs of female US Marines that were posted online without their consent, US Defence Secretary James Mattis promised on Friday.

“Lack of respect for the dignity and humanity of fellow members of the Department of Defence is unacceptable and counter to unit cohesion,” Mattis said in a statement.

“We will not excuse or tolerate such behaviour if we are to uphold our values and maintain our ability to defeat the enemy on the battlefield,” he said.

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The scandal also prompted the commandant of the US Marine Corps to cancel an overseas trip to address the situation.

General Robert Neller told reporters at the Pentagon on Friday the allegations that photographs of female Marines had been posted and comments made about them, “presumably by other Marines,” undermined everything the Marine Corps stands for.

“There is no honour in denigrating a fellow Marine in any way, shape or form,” Neller said.

He said he didn’t know how many active duty Marines had been involved in the website Marines United, a private Facebook group where a link to the photos could be found. The site has been disabled, but US media reports said Friday others had been identified.

“I can assure you if there’s accountability to be made, those that are involved will be held accountable,” he said.

Neller said the investigation would look into the “scope and scale” of the release of the photos on social media and that it would “also take a look at any underlying cultural issues.”

He said men and women had been fighting side by side in the Marine Corps for 15 years.

“I mean, come on, guys. They just want to do their job. Let them do their job and you do yours,” a visibly unnerved Neller said.

The Army, Air Force and Navy also are looking into the case. Some of the women whose photos were distributed were in those military branches.

-dpa