Abbott Calls For Independent Investigation Of MH17; Foreign Minister Off To UN To Co-Ordinate Campaign

The Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, has dispatched the Foreign Minister, Julie Bishop, to the United Nations to co-ordinate Australia’s demand for a full and fearless investigation into the shooting down of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17.

Abbott

Speaking at a press conference, Abbott and Bishop said a binding United Nations Security Council resolution was needed to ensure that an independent and impartial investigation takes place.

Abbott said a proper investigation “is a matter of the utmost gravity for us and others”. He said 298 innocent people have been killed, “people who had no part in the conflict in Europe but whose lives were snuffed out”. [Read more...]


Shorten: A Pall Of Shock Hangs Across The Australian Nation

The Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten, has given support to the government and called for an independent investigation of the attack on Malaysia Airlines flight MH17.

Shorten

Speaking at a press conference in Melbourne, Shorten describing the shooting down of the plane as an “act of devastating evil and shocking beyond comprehension”. He said a “pall of shock hangs across the Australian nation” as it attempts to comprehend something “alien to our experience”. [Read more...]


Obama Calls For Ceasefire In Ukraine; Says US Will Increase Pressure On Russia

United States President Barack Obama has called for a global investigation of the shooting down of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17.

Obama

Obama said the deaths of 298 passengers and crew was a “global tragedy”. He described the attack as “an outrage of unspeakable proportions” that required a credible international investigation.

Speaking at the White House, Obama said Russia, pro-Russian forces and Ukraine must agree to a ceasefire. “The eyes of the world are on Eastern Ukraine and we are going to make sure the truth comes out,” Obama said. “It’s time for peace and security to be restored in Ukraine.” [Read more...]


Abbott Says The News Just Gets Worse On A Grim Day For Australia And The World

The Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, says news about the missile attack on Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 has “just got worse”.

Abbott

He said it was “highly probable” that the plane was shot down by a pro-Russian, separatist-controlled, surface-to-air missile in Russian-backed rebel territory in Ukraine.

Of the 298 passengers on the plane, Abbott said 28 were Australian. The others were: Netherlands 154, Malaysia 43, Indonesia 12, United Kingdom 9, Germany 4, Belgium 4, Philippines 3 and Canada 1. The nationalities of another 41 victims has not been determined.

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Transcript of Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s press conference on Flight MH17.

ABBOTT: As you all know, Australians awoke to very bad news and in the course of the day the news has just got worse.

There were 298 people on this aircraft. It is highly probable that MH17 was shot down by a pro-Russian separatist controlled surface-to-air missile. So, it was shot down over Russian-backed rebel territory by what appears to be a Russian-backed rebel missile. [Read more...]


Chris Bowen Says The ALP Must Be The Party Of Growth, Opportunity And Fairness

The Shadow Treasurer, Chris Bowen, has set out a policy approach for the Labor Party’s future.

BowenIn a speech to the McKell Institute, Bowen attacked the “prejudice” and “lazy thinking” of the Abbott government.

Of the way forward for the ALP, Bowen said: “Well, it is certainly not to retreat inward, to shy away from trade, to resist technology in a Luddite fashion or to become more inward looking, more suspicious of foreign investment or more embracing of protection. But nor is it to retrench support for individuals, to cut investments in basic services or give up the fight for a more equal society and for equality of opportunity.”

Bowen said the ALP had to be the party of growth: “Labor is and should always be a party of economic growth.”

More than ever, Bowen said, the ALP also needed to be the party of opportunity and fairness: “…Equality of opportunity has always mattered to Labor. It’s what drives us. And it is now more important than ever before.”

Bowen began his speech with a tribute to the former NSW Labor leader, William McKell, who was Premier between 1941 and 1947. McKell also served as Governor-General from 1947 until 1953.

Transcript of speech by Chris Bowen to the McKell Institute.

Growth, Opportunity And Fairness: A Better Way

I’d like to thank the McKell Institute for the opportunity to speak here today.

Ever since I first read Vince Kelly’s “Man of the People” many years ago as a young lad, I’ve been an admirer of William McKell’s and respecter of his legacy. [Read more...]


Abbott And Shorten Address Parliament On Shooting Down Of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has made a statement to the House of Representatives on the shooting down of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine.

The Opposition Leader, Bill Shorten, and the Deputy Leader of the Greens, Adam Bandt, also spoke.

“This looks less like an accident than a crime,” Abbott said. “And if so, the perpetrators must be brought to justice.”

It now appears that 28 Australians were amongst the 298 people killed in the attack. Many of the passengers were due to attend an international conference on AIDS in Melbourne.

  • Watch Abbott, Shorten & Bandt (14m – transcripts below)
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Statement released by Prime Minister Tony Abbott.

Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17

The thoughts and prayers of all Australians today are with the families and loved ones of the Australians that have tragically been killed on Malaysia Airlines flight MH17.

Our hearts go out to the families of all the dead.

At least 27 Australians citizens have lost their lives on flight MH17. Nine resided in Queensland, nine in Victoria, seven in Western Australia, one in the ACT and one in New South Wales. [Read more...]


Senator Cory Bernardi (Lib-SA) – Address To The National Press Club

The conservative Liberal Senator from South Australia, Cory Bernardi, has addressed the National Press Club in Canberra.

Bernardi has been a senator since 2006. He is a former shadow minister.

Transcript of Cory Bernardi’s speech to the National Press Club.

BernardiThank you Steve and may I thank the honourable members and officials of the National Press Club. It’s a great honour to be here and a delight to be here on such an auspicious day.

It seems like a long time ago, in fact it was 2007, that I authored a report which ran very heavily in the Adelaide Advertiser that we needed cool heads on global warming.

If I could characterise one aspect of my political career it’s been that we’ve constantly been in that battle and today I think the Liberal Party and the Coalition parties, at least from my perspective, [have] made significant inroads into restoring some common sense for the people of Australia. [Read more...]