Aug 22, 2013

Main parties snub Big Tobacco money

Australia’s ruling Labor Party pledged Thursday to ban tobacco firm donations if returned to office and the opposition followed suit, ordering an end to campaign funds from the industry. Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said that, if re-elected Sept. 7, Labor would amend the Electoral ...

Aug 21, 2013

Strict asylum seeker policy working, Canberra claims

Australia remained adamant Wednesday that its asylum seeker policy was working, despite another boat sinking and nearly 3,000 people arriving since the ruling Labor Party announced a new hard-line stance last month. Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, who is trailing conservative rival Tony Abbott in ...

Aug 17, 2013

Rudd's Labor may lose seven marginal seats

Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is on the brink of defeat in next month’s national elections, with a poll indicating that his ruling Labor Party will lose seven of the eight most marginal electorates. An analysis of the seats, four of which are held ...

Aussie opposition regains poll lead

Aug 10, 2013

Aussie opposition regains poll lead

Australia’s opposition has regained the lead over Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s government, with 52 percent of respondents in an opinion poll published Saturday saying they will support the coalition in the Sept. 7 national election. The ruling Labor Party had a 48 percent share ...

Aug 7, 2013

Australia says tough asylum seeker policy working

Australia on Wednesday said its new hard-line stance on boat people was working with widespread evidence from Indonesia that asylum seekers were demanding their money back from people smugglers. Prime Minister Kevin Rudd struck a deal with his Papua New Guinea counterpart, Peter O’Neill, ...

Rudd faces battle as campaign starts

Aug 5, 2013

Rudd faces battle as campaign starts

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd on Monday launched the first day of Australia’s election campaign with a raft of funding pledges as a poll showed support slumping and the Murdoch press urged voters to “kick this mob out.” Rudd on Sunday named Sept. 7 as ...

Jul 31, 2013

Australia graft probe urges charges for Labor officials

Criminal charges were recommended Wednesday against two former high-profile Australian Labor Party ministers over corruption allegations following an explosive inquiry that gripped Sydney for months. The Independent Commission Against Corruption found that Eddie Obeid, formerly a powerful kingpin in the New South Wales state ...

Abbott: use military on boat people

Jul 25, 2013

Abbott: use military on boat people

Australia’s conservative opposition unveiled plans Thursday for a military-led response to repel boat people, branding the problem a “national emergency” after the government declared a radical new policy aimed at crippling people smuggling. With tens of thousands of asylum seekers risking their lives on ...

Australia's hard-line refugee policy begins

Jul 20, 2013

Australia's hard-line refugee policy begins

A boat carrying 81 passengers that was stopped Saturday in waters off northwest Australia was the first to face the government’s new policy of refusing entry to refugees and sending them to neighboring Papua New Guinea. The people will initially be sent to Christmas ...

Jul 14, 2013

Australia targets asylum seekers

Australia will prioritize work to stem the flow of asylum seekers attempting to reach the country by sea, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said Saturday, after an infant drowned in a boat attempting to reach the country from Indonesia. The body of a boy less ...

Jul 6, 2013

Gillard discusses sexism issues

Julia Gillard, Australia’s first female prime minister, has opened up for the first time on the sexism that plagued her leadership and famous misogyny speech in her final interview before being ousted. Gillard, an unmarried atheist lawyer, was dumped as Australia’s prime minister by ...