Green Party leader Adam Bandt has weathered a wave of criticism for calling on Australia to become a republic just hours after the Queen’s death was announced.
A statement from Buckingham Palace around 6.30pm Thursday (early Friday morning AEST) confirmed the 96-year-old died in Balmoral surrounded by her family.
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“The Queen died peacefully in Balmoral this afternoon,” Buckingham Palace said.
“The King and The Queen Consort will remain in Balmoral tonight and return to London tomorrow.”
Tributes have flown in from politicians from around the world – but Adam Bandt, leader of the Green Party and federal MP for Melbourne, added an additional message to his condolences posted on Twitter on Friday morning.
“Rest in Peace Queen Elizabeth II,” he wrote.
“Our thoughts are with her family and everyone who loved her.
“Now Australia has to move forward.
“We need a treaty with the First Nations people and we need to become a republic.”
Among those who felt Bandt’s tweet was distasteful was former Immigration Secretary Alex Hawke, who described his words as “really ruthless and without any decency.”
“Ignore the feelings of hundreds of millions of people around the world today. Just don’t need it,” he wrote.
Others have criticized Bandt for using the Queen’s death to make a political argument.
“Adam, today is about mourning and remembering Queen Elizabeth II and celebrating her life and contribution,” one user wrote.
“Surely the talk of a republic (sic) could wait for another time?”
Another Twitter user responded to Bandt’s tweet by saying: “How merciless of you. I support an Australian republic, but today is a day of condolences, not politics.”
Meanwhile, less than half an hour after the Queen’s death, the Australian Republic Movement (ARM) released a statement on Twitter to pay due respect to “the significant contribution” made by the Queen.
The statement was quick to mention the monarch’s words during the 1999 referendum on an Australian republic.
The Queen supported Australians’ right to become a fully independent nation during the 1999 referendum on an Australian republic, saying that she “has always made it clear that the future of the monarchy in Australia is a matter for the monarchy Australian people and they alone should decide, by democratic and constitutional means,” it said.
“During her reign, the Australia Act 1986 was passed, eliminating many of the remaining opportunities for UK interference in the Australian government. Appeals from Australian courts to UK courts have been abolished.”
ARM chairman Peter FitzSimons said it was unlikely a monarch “such as is respected or admired by the Australian people” would ever be seen again.
“We are deeply saddened by the news of Queen Elizabeth’s death and express our deep gratitude and appreciation for her service to the Commonwealth.”
https://7news.com.au/politics/greens/greens-leader-adam-bandt-slammed-over-highly-insensitive-tweet-calling-for-a-republic-following-the-queens-death-c-8179280 Death of the Queen: Green Party leader Adam Bandt hit out over a “highly insensitive” tweet calling for a republic following the Queen’s death