Christian Porter defamation
(Image: AAP/Mick Tsikas)

Embattled Attorney-General Christian Porter has commenced defamation proceedings in the Federal Court against the ABC and journalist Louise Milligan over allegations he was the perpetrator of a historical rape.

The attorney-general, who is on medical leave, is seeking aggravated damages over an ABC article from February 26.

Since Porter was named as the minister involved in the allegation days later, the government has strenuously resisted growing calls for an independent inquiry into the attorney-general.