Australia

Australia same-sex marriage plebiscite comes to a head

Swimming star Ian Thorpe was never an advocate for Australia’s postal survey on same-sex marriage, which is due to wrap up on Tuesday. “It is really just a stalling tactic,” says the 35-year-old marriage equality campaigner and five-time Olympic gold medallist. “But I tell people the only thing worse than a postal plebiscite is not winning it.” Mr Thorpe, who ...

Australia beat France at Rugby League World Cup – as it happened

Well, there might not be too much surprise over the scoreline – and the 46-point margin probably reflects the Kangaroos’ second-half dominance – but the identity of the scorer of four tries cannot have been predicted. Wade Graham was the undoubted star of the show in Canberra, although it’s fair to say that the hosts would have been safe even ...

Turnbull’s Uluru statement rejection is ‘mean-spirited bastardry’ – legal expert

Senior Indigenous and legal voices have criticised Malcolm Turnbull for reportedly rejecting the Uluru statement in favour of a symbolic model of constitutional recognition, calling it “a despicable act of mean-spirited bastardry”. News Corp has reported that Turnbull voted against a submission in favour of the Uluru statement recommendations, which include embedding an Indigenous voice to parliament in the constitution, at a cabinet meeting ...

Australia urged to consider police help for Manus refugees

Australia should consider deploying police to help protect refugees and asylum seekers it has detained in Papua New Guinea, Human Rights Watch says. Australia holds refugees and asylum seekers arriving by boat on PNG’s Manus Island and the Pacific nation of Nauru. The Manus centre is due to close next week. Australia has set up alternative accommodation in a nearby ...

Australia risks humanitarian crisis over asylum, UNHCR says

Australia holds refugees and asylum seekers arriving by boat on PNG’s Manus Island and the Pacific nation of Nauru. Canberra plans to shut the Manus centre by 31 October, but uncertainty remains over where its 900 detainees will go. The UNHCR said it was “profoundly troubled” by the “mounting risks” associated with Australia’s withdrawal. “Having created the present crisis, to ...

Australian students at richer schools have unfair advantage in science – report

Australian students who attend wealthy schools have an unfair advantage in science education, an OECD report has found. The report, released in September, used the latest Program for International Student Assessment – or Pisa – results to examine the factors that impact on science education in 69 countries. When it came to access to resources, exposure to science and instructional practices, only ...

Canada takes first official step to buying used fighter jets from Australia

Canada has taken the first official step to purchasing used fighter jets from Australia as its dispute with Boeing continues unresolved. The Canadian government has now submitted a formal expression of interest to Australia to acquire the aircraft, Public Services and Procurement Canada confirmed. Canada began discussions in late August with the Australian government to assess the potential purchase of ...

Manus refugees rejected by Australia head to US

A small group of refugees have become the first to be moved from Australia’s offshore detention centre on Manus island to the US to start new lives. The 22 men have been accepted by the US under a deal reached between Australia and the Obama administration. Another group are expected to be moved from the island nation of Nauru in ...

Tony Abbott’s daughter appears in same-sex marriage campaign ad

Fathers and daughters are hardly strangers to disagreement. And so it is with Tony Abbott, the prominent Australian anti-same-sex marriage campaigner, and his daughter Frances, who has backed the rival yes campaign in the country’s keenly contested postal survey. Two weeks after she put herself at odds with her father, the country’s former prime minister, with a post on Instagram, ...

Australia joins UK space radar mission

Australia is to be a launch partner on the UK’s innovative new small radar satellite, NovaSAR. The spacecraft, which will track shipping and forestry change from orbit, is due to launch on an Indian rocket early next year. Australia’s main research organisation, CSIRO, has signed a 10% share in NovaSAR’s data. The deal comes on the heels of an announcement that the ...

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