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Australian PM Turnbull brushes aside claims that he is interfering in PNG Politics

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has brushed aside suggestions that his visit and the timing of it was to show support to the current Government on the eve of election.

Prime Minister Turnbull said the timing of his visit was entirely unrelated to any domestic political events in PNG. “That’s a matter for the people of PNG, absolutely, but you know the relationship between PNG and Australia, and the engagement between PNG and Australia is of vital importance to both countries and it continues before and after elections.

 We’re democracies. We regularly have elections.  We have them more often than you do, we have three-year terms, yours are five-year terms, but it’s important to continue that engagement.” Last week a former Prime Minister, Sir Mekere Morauta, and some members of the public raised concerns that the visit is like an endorsement by Australia of the current Government. “It is insensitive and interfering for Mr Turnbull to pay homage to Mr O’Neill at this point in time” said Sir Mekere. Photo: PM Turnbull welcomed by PNG Defence Force/ by Justin Tkatchenko
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