The embassy embarrassment: Its all Greek to Mark Dreyfus

Menzies Research Centre's picture
Senator the Hon Arthur Sinodinos AO

Despite being the party most aligned with multiculturalism and identity politics, Labor surprisingly and audaciously played the race card this week.

A press release from shadow attorney-general Mark Dreyfus said letters from the Greek embassy confirming that Julia Banks, Alex Hawke, Michael McCormack and Arthur Sinodinos were not Greek citizens were “unconvincing”.

So the Greek government is incapable of knowing whether members of the Australian government are its citizens? This strikes us as seemingly opportunist.

Dreyfus goes on to attack Minister for Energy and Environment Josh Frydenberg, whose mother was a stateless immigrant to Australia of Jewish descent who fled the Holocaust.

Indeed, his condescending ploy was clearly an attempt to shift the focus away from his colleagues Katy Gallagher, David Feeney, Justin Keay, Susan Lamb and Josh Wilson, all of whom admit to being dual British citizens when they nominated as candidates before last year’s federal election.

Alarmingly, the ABC fell for it, and broadcast it on both television and radio.

The Prime Minister dealt with these absurdities in the Parliament and during his last interview on the 7:30 report last night with Leigh Sales.

Here is what he said in response to Tony Burke questioning the status of Assistant Minister for

Immigration and Border Protection Alex Hawke, the member for Mitchell: “Let's look at one of the people Labor wants to refer to the High Court: the member for Mitchell. The member for Mitchell has a document signed by the Ministry of the Interior and Administrative Reconstruction of the Hellenic Republic, and it says, 'As no registration ever took place within the municipal or mail registries of the state, he' — that is, the member for Mitchell — 'cannot be considered a Greek citizen or national.' It is signed with the official seal of the ministry of the interior.

“Is the manager of opposition business seriously contending that the House should make such a fool of itself as to send off to the High Court somebody that the Greek government says is not a Greek citizen?

The honourable member chastised me about what the High Court might rule in the Deputy Prime Minister's case, but he is now claiming that he knows Greek law better than the Hellenic Republic itself. This is absolutely ludicrous.

At least the Prime Minister and the Liberal Party are standing up for the ethnic communities that make our nation so diverse and envied.

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