By Peter McLaren-Kennedy • 04 June 2022 • 10:55
Queen Elizabeth II honoured as Australia renames island after her
Making the announcement on Saturday, June 4, Anthony Albanese, whose Labour party ended almost a decade of conservative government in a May 21 general election, described the renaming as a “fitting salute” to the monarch.
At a Canberra ceremony, he said: “Today we celebrate her long life and 70 years of service to Australia and the Commonwealth, including no less than 16 visits to our shores,”
Earlier in the week, Albanese joined more than 50 Commonwealth leaders in praising the queen, but he sparked a renewed debate by adding that Australia’s relationship with the monarchy had matured.
The discussion whether Australia should become a republic was re-ignited on Tuesday when the prime minister appointed the country’s first “Assistant Minister for the Republic” in his ministry.
The move is seen as very significant with the debate having continued for decades. A national referendum in 1999 went the way of retaining the status quo 55 per cent to 45 per cent.
Albanese has in the past shown his support for republicanism, but according to a report by Reuters, the labour government is expected to wait until a second term before advocating a formal break from the monarchy.
Although Australia has honoured the queen by renaming an island after her, the country looks more likely to break the link with the monarchy than ever before. But for now, Australia remains a member of the Commonwealth with Queen Elizabeth II as its head.
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Originally from South Africa, Peter is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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