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An investigation has been launched into alleged serious misconduct involving 20 cadets and midshipmen from the Australian Defence Force Academy in Canberra.

Vice-chief of the defence force, Air Marshal Mark Binskin, told reporters seven people had been suspended pending the investigation.

He said ADFA staff had become aware on Monday of the off-campus incident that occurred on the weekend.

They immediately referred the matter to the ADF investigative service and an investigation is under way,” he said.

"It appears the incident is linked to a group of male cadets and midshipmen that is operating contrary to the values and standards expected of ADF members and our future leaders.”

The cadets and midshipmen span all services and all three years of training.

Air Marshal Binskin said they were all male cadets acting inappropriately.

He said he believed the culture within ADFA was improving, despite the actions of a minority who “just don't get it”.

“It has come to light through the moral courage of a number of ADFA cadets who have come forward to talk about it,” he said.

“So I actually think that is demonstrating a good culture which is developing in ADFA.”

Air Marshal Binskin said the ADF would not tolerate bad behaviour by its future leaders.

“Enough is enough. There are some people that obviously ... still don't understand and that is what we are trying to get to here.”