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Tuesday, 5 June 1984
Page: 2494

Senator GARETH EVANS —Yesterday Senator Kilgariff asked Senator Button a question concerning Ms Petra Kelly's visit to Australia. The Minister for Foreign Affairs has provided the following answer: Ms Kelly was invited to Australia by the organisers of the Australian and New Zealand Association for the Advancement of Science Congress held recently in Canberra. At the suggestion of the Congress organisers and Senator Coleman, she was invited to stay on as a guest of the Minister for Foreign Affairs for a period after the Congress, in order to permit her to gain a broader understanding of Australia than would have been possible had her visit been confined to Canberra. It was not unexpected that she should express controversial views during her visit. An officer of the Department of Foreign Affairs was assigned to accompany Ms Kelly throughout her visit. This is a customary courtesy for such visitors. As her escort officer, the officer in question accompanied Ms Kelly to Pine Gap but did not, of course, participate in or associate herself with the demonstration, which was a purely personal initiative on Ms Kelly's part. Final costs of Ms Kelly's visit are not yet available. The Department of Foreign Affairs share of the costs for Ms Kelly and her fellow Bundestag member Gerd Bastian is estimated at $8,000.