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Thursday, 28 June 2018
Page: 4311

Senator O'SULLIVAN (Queensland) (12:17): I ask that general business notice of motion No. 918, relating to Venezuela, be taken as a formal motion.

The PRESIDENT: Is there any objection to this motion being taken as formal?

Senator Chisholm: Yes.

The PRESIDENT: It has been denied.

Senator O'SULLIVAN: I seek leave to make a one-minute statement.

The PRESIDENT: Leave is granted for one minute.

Senator O'SULLIVAN: A decade ago, Labor and the Greens co-signed an invitation to Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez to visit Australia. It read:

… what Venezuela has been able to achieve in so little time will be a source of inspiration and ideas for many in Australia.

Today Labor and the Greens are joining to deny formality to my motion on Venezuela in order to hide their embarrassment and division. My notice of motion details how the IMF, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights have all lambasted the Venezuelan regime.

Last year, the Victorian branch of the CFMEU and the Sydney branch of the Maritime Union of Australia both unanimously resolved to pledge solidarity with the people of Venezuela and their 'Bolivarian revolution' socialist government. Recently the WA CFMEU president, Mr Vinnie Molina, wrote to the Minister for Foreign Affairs urging her to recognise the Venezuelan presidential election— (Time expired)