Tuesday, 05 Dec 2023

Paul Keating speculates King Charles could renounce UKs claim on Australia

Paul Keating speculates King Charles could renounce UKs claim on Australia


Paul Keating speculates King Charles could renounce UKs claim on Australia

Former Australian prime minister Paul Keating has speculated that King Charles could renounce the UK's claim on Australia because the royal family hoped that Australia would become a republic after the referendum in 1999.

The former Labor leader says he discussed his ambition for Australia to become a republic with Queen Elizabeth during a private exchange at Balmoral in 1993. He says he told the Queen he would "not involve her family" in his campaigning for an Australian head of state.

"I think the royal family would have been so glad for the referendum to have passed, to be honest," Keating told Prof James Curran, a University of Sydney historian, during an online event on Wednesday evening.

"Look at the French. The French had a revolution for their republic. The Americans had a revolution for their republic. We couldn't even pinch ours off Queen Elizabeth the Second - who didn't want it. We couldn't take the title, even if the monarch was happy to give it."

Keating, Australia's prime minister from 1991 to 1996, said the Australian Republican Movement wanted him to re-enter the fray after the death of Queen Elizabeth in early September but he wasn't motivated to resume his public advocacy.

"Why would you? We fluffed it," Keating said on Wednesday. "If Australians have so little pride in themselves, so little pride that they are happy to be represented by the monarch of Great Britain, why would somebody like me want to shift their miserable view of themselves?"

Keating said the case for Australia to become a republic was so obvious it made itself.

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