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Army commanders strategize on reducing sexual assault and harassment

Monday - 2/3/2014, 6:00am  ET

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Fresh off a training session on preventing sexual assault and harassment in the military, Army commanders are now charged with finding ways to get troops to protect one another. It's an effort to change a culture that's led to 26,000 service members reporting some type of unwanted sexual contact or sexual assault, based on a survey conducted last year.

Army Vice Chief of Staff General John Campbell says sexual abuse is now considered an "insider threat," and will not be tolerated. He says respect and discipline, along with education, are part of the solution.

At the end of last year, after lengthy negotiations with the Pentagon, lawmakers passed legislation that beefs up legal rights for victims and strips military commanders of their ability to overturn jury convictions. But, defense officials beat back efforts to allow victims of rape and sexual assault to go outside the chain of command for prosecutions.

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032-w-38-(Jackie Quinn, AP correspondent, with General John Campbell, Vice Chief of Staff of the Army)--Military commanders are vowing to find new ways to help prevent sexual assaults among their troops. AP correspondent Jackie Quinn reports. (3 Feb 2014)

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054-a-10-(General John Campbell, Vice Chief of Staff of the Army, in AP interview)-"court will do"-Army Vice Chief of Staff General John Campbell says he's opposed to legislative efforts to remove military commanders from the prosecutions of sexual assault cases. ((longer version of cut used in wrap)) (3 Feb 2014)

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053-a-08-(General John Campbell, Vice Chief of Staff of the Army, in AP interview)-"Army's all about"-Army Vice Chief of Staff General John Campbell says they cannot tolerate the culture that allows sexual assaults to take place. (3 Feb 2014)

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052-a-14-(General John Campbell, Vice Chief of Staff of the Army, in AP interview)-"not to go"-Army Vice Chief of Staff General John Campbell says commanders are creating buddy systems to help prevent sexual assaults among newer recruits. (3 Feb 2014)

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051-a-11-(General John Campbell, Vice Chief of Staff of the Army, in AP interview)-"put into place"-Army Vice Chief of Staff General John Campbell says commanders are being trained in a variety of programs to try to prevent sexual assaults involving service personnel. (3 Feb 2014)

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