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Thursday, 21 November 2013
Page: 1041

Mr SHORTEN (MaribyrnongLeader of the Opposition) (14:01): I thank the Prime Minister for his information to the House. The position of the opposition on this matter is clear. Let me again in this place reiterate our commitment to bipartisan support in the swift and timely restoration of Australia's relationship with Indonesia. We know that our relationship with Indonesia can recover; it can thrive; it can prosper—it must. Our commitment is to see the improvement and repair of this relationship conducted in a timely way. Our position continues to be one of support for the government. Now is the time for temperate language and carefully calibrated discussion with our Indonesian colleagues. As I have said in this place on a number of times in recent days, a strong and constructive relationship is fundamental to our national interest. The seriousness of this matter or the sense of offence that our Indonesian friends are feeling means that we must redouble our efforts to return to a positive and constructive dialogue between our governments. Other nations have resolved similar matters. We can too, and we must do this in a timely manner.