Coat of arms

Deputy Chair, Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade

Co-Chair, Parliamentary Friends of Israel

Senator for South Australia

Media Release
13 December 2023

Statement on the Albanese Government’s uncertain position on the Israel-Hamas war

I endorse the recent statement by Shadow Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Birmingham’s regarding the Albanese Government’s uncertain position on the Israel-Hamas war (quoted below).

Israel has the right to protect its citizens from terrorist attacks such as that carried out on 7 October—and that includes a right to eliminate the threat posed by Hamas.

As pointed out in a recent editorial in The Australian, Australia must continue to support Israel’s legitimate right to pursue this military objective—the legality of which has been recognised by 450 of Australia’s leading lawyers in a recent letter to Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, Foreign Affairs Minister Penny Wong and Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus.


Despite initially stating its support for Israel’s right to self-defence the Albanese Government keeps changing Australia’s stance and undermining Israel’s position.

The weakening of Australia’s position demonstrates a weakness in the Albanese Government, who aren’t standing firm in support of Hamas’s removal at the very time Israel needs that support most.

In a weak and appalling step, the motion the Albanese Government decided to support doesn’t even mention Hamas, let alone call for their removal from power.

How does the Albanese Government expect Hamas to be defeated if Israel isn’t allowed to defend itself against the terrorism it faced?

A premature and one-sided ceasefire will only leave Hamas in place, able to rearm, reorganise and repeat the deliberate murders, rapes, beheadings and kidnapping of innocent people.

When the going gets tough in the fight against terrorism is when a government most needs to hold its nerve.

With this vote the Albanese Government has shown it lacks that strength.