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G20 Special Representative Visits the Caribbean
Australia's Special Representative to the G20, Mr Daniel Sloper and Assistant Director - G20 International Engagement, Mr Samuel Bentley are currently in the Caribbean conducting high-level meetings and outreach in Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago and Jamaica. Currently in Trinidad and Tobago, Mr Sloper and Mr Bentley, accompanied by Australia's High Commissioner to the Caribbean, His Excellency Ross Tysoe, AO engaged with the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretary General Ambassador Irwin LaRocque and participated in a meeting with Guyana's Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Honourable Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett last week in Guyana.
In Trinidad and Tobago Mr Sloper met with the Honourable Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Winston Dookeran, met with senior level representatives of all CARICOM States present in Trinidad and Tobago. Today, Monday 28 July 2014, Mr Sloper will participate in a roundtable discussion on Australia’s hosting of the G20 Leaders in Brisbane, November 2014 and provide an update on the recently held meeting of G20 Trade Ministers and the B20 meeting of Business leaders.
For more information on this event, please click here.
WARNING: Jobs/Phishing Scam Alert
The Australian High Commission advises all persons interested in visiting, working or living in Australia to please be aware of a number of Job Scams that may be related to Phishing Scams.
Social media sites and the wider Internet present many opportunities to earn extra money; many of which are not legitimate. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!
Always ensure that any potential employers and requests are legitimate and be wary of the following:
* Any job where you are asked to accept and transfer money from one bank account to another.
* Being asked for your bank account number or for the bank account number of another person so that someone’s salary or money owing to them can be credited to the account.
* Instructions to forward funds to persons abroad.
* Visa application through third parties/agents and invitations to live in Australia.
We remember: Australians mourn the loss of Flight MH17.
The loss of Malaysia Airlines flight 17 over Ukraine is a terrible tragedy and our thoughts are with the families of the passengers and crew on MH17 as they struggle to come to terms with their loss. There were 298 people on MH17 and we grieve for them all, but particularly for the 37 men, women and children who called Australia home. We also take this time to remember the international HIV/AIDS research community which has suffered a huge loss.
Prime Minister Abbott, in addressing this loss to the global community stated: "in coming weeks, Australians will stand with the families, friends, neighbours and colleagues who have lost people they cherish. Twenty three million Australians share the sadness of those who mourn. We are united in grief and in our determination to ensure that justice is done." To read the full message of condolence, click here.
Australians and members of the wider international community are encouraged to sign the official condolence book found here.
The Australian High Commission wishes to advise that anyone with concerns for the welfare of Australian family or friends should contact DFAT’s 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on + 61 2 6261 3305 from overseas, or within Australia on 1300 555 135 (local call cost). Malaysia Airlines has also established a call centre in Malaysia (+603 7884 1234) and The Netherlands (+317 0348 7770).
Approaching entry into Force: Australia ratifies the Arms Trade Treaty
On 3 June Australia's Permanent Representative to the United Nations (UN) New York, His Excellency Gary Quinlan deposited Australia's instrument of ratification of the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) at an event held at the UN New York to mark the first anniversary of the Treaty's opening for signature. Seven other States (Austria, Belgium, Burkina Faso, Jamaica, Luxembourg, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Samoa) also deposited their instruments of ratification at the event, bringing the total number of ratifications to 40.
An additional 10 ratifications are now needed to trigger the Treaty's entry into force. The ATT ratification ceremony took place during an event co-chaired by Australia and Trinidad and Tobago, with the co-sponsorship of the seven other ratifying States and Japan.
The full text of HE Quinlan's speech following the deposit of Australia's instrument of ratification can be downloaded here.
The Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Honourable Julie Bishop also issued a Press Release on the ratification event which can be downloaded here.
An Op-ed on the significance of the Arms Trade Treaty by Minister Julie Bishop can be downloaded here.
Australia in Focus - The G20 Presidency
Australia holds the presidency of the Group of Twenty (G20) from 1 December 2013 to 30 November 2014. Australia will chair the G20 meetings in 2014, bringing together leaders, Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors, Trade Ministers and Employment and Labour Ministers from major developing and advanced economies to address critical economic and financial challenges facing the world.
The G20 is the world’s premier forum for international economic cooperation and decision making. G20 members account for 85 per cent of global GDP, 75 per cent of global trade and two-thirds of the world’s population. Australia’s G20 Presidency will focus on promoting stronger economic growth and employment outcomes and making the global economy more resilient to deal with future shocks.The G20 Leaders’ Summit will be held in Brisbane on 15-16 November 2014.
For more details on the G20, download this overview.
To read about Australian Sherpa Dr Heather Smith's address on the priorities of Australia during its G20 Presidency, click here.
Anzac Day 2014
Anzac Day, the day on which Australians remember the sacrifice of those who have died in war, is commemorated every year on 25 April. The Anzac tradition—the ideals of courage, endurance and mateship that are still relevant today—was established on 25 April 1915 when the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps landed on the Gallipoli Peninsula.
On Friday April 25 2014 the High Commission held an Anzac Day Ceremony at the St. James Military Cemetery.
Below are some images from the ceremony.
British High Commissioner Arthur Snell (l), Minister of National Security, the Honourable Gary Griffith (2nd from l), and Australian High Commissioner Ross Tysoe (r) bow their heads as Wing Commander Darryl Daniel of the Trinidad and Tobago Air Guard reads a military prayer during the Anzac Day ceremony.
We remember Pilot Officer A.A. Morris, Flying Officer J.W.P. Walker and Flying Officer G.T. Risbey
The Australian High Commission takes this opportuity to thank everyone who participated in this year's Anzac Day ceremony.
Speaker of the House, Bronwyn Bishop visits Trinidad and Tobago
Speaker of the House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Australia, the Honourable Bronwyn Bishop, MP, is greeted on her arrival by President of the Senate of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, Senator the Honourable Timothy Hamel-Smith. Looking on is Mr Brian Caesar, Marshal of the Parliament of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago.
On April 05 2014, Speaker of the House of Representatives in Australia, the Honourable Bronwyn Bishop, MP, conducted a 24 hour visit to The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. His Excellency Ross Tysoe, AO, Ms Leona Landers, Deputy High Commissioner, of the Australian High Commission in Port of Spain Trinidad and Tobago and Mr Damien Jones, Senior Adviser accompanied Ms Bishop. Ms Bishop’s first stop was a courtesy call on Senator the Honourable Timothy Hamel-Smith, President of the Senate and Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Honourable Wade Mark, MP, her Commonwealth counterpart in Trinidad and Tobago.
From L-R: President of the Senate (Trinidad and Tobago), Senator the Honourable Timothy Hamel-Smith, Speaker of the House of Representatives (Australia), the Honourable Bronwyn Bishop, MP, President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, His Excellency Anthony Carmona, SC, ORTT, and Speaker of the House of Representatives (Trinidad and Tobago), the Honourable Wade Mark, MP.
Ms Bishop then proceeded to a courtesy call on His Excellency Anthony Carmona, SC, ORTT, President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, at Knowsley Building in Port of Spain. The meeting covered a number of items of mutual interest between Australia and Trinidad and Tobago and was very engaging discussion.
His Excellency Anthony Carmona, SC, ORTT, and the Honourable Speaker Bronwyn Bishop, MP, pose for a photo at Knowsley Building.
Ms Bishop’s delegation then departed for a visit to the Office of the Parliament where an interview was conducted for Trinidad and Tobago’s Parliament TV station. A tour of the Parliament Chamber, followed by conducted by Senate President Timothy Hamel-Smith and Speaker the Honourable Wade Mark, MP.
Speaker the Honourable Bronwyn Bishop, MP gets ready for her interview with Parliament Channel
A tour of Port of Spain and environs ending at the Lady Young Lookout point was then organised to allow Ms Bishop to experience a little of the sights and sounds of the capital city. In the evening the Executive Committee of the Trinidad and Tobago Branch of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association hosted a farewell dinner for Ms Bishop and her delegation.
Speaker of the House of Representatives of Australia, the Honourable Bronwyn Bishop, MP, and President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, His Excellency Anthony Carmona, SC, ORTT are flanked by His Excellency, Ross Tysoe, AO, Australian High Commissioner (left), President of the Senate, Senator the Honourable Timothy Hamel-Smith (2nd from left), Speaker of the House of Representatives of Trinidad and Tobago, the Honourable Wade Mark, MP, (2nd from right) and Deputy High Commissioner of Australia, Ms Leona Landers (right).
The Australian High Commission takes this opportunity to thank all those who were involved in putting together this visit for the Speaker of the House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Australia, the Honourable Bronwyn Bishop, MP.
Commemoration of Commonwealth Day 2014
Commonwealth Day was observed on March 10 2014. The theme for this year was "Team Commonwealth." In observance of this important day and to increase awareness of its significance among the student population of Trinidad and Tobago, the Trinidad and Tobago Branch of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association hosted a Commonwealth Day event on Wednesday 26 March 2014, at the Office of the Parliament in Port of Spain.
Speaker of the House, the Honourable Wade Mark, MP speaks with His Excellency, Ross Tysoe, AO and Deputy Head of Mission, Miss Leona Landers at the Australian information booth during the Commonwealth Day commemoration event.
Several Commonwealth countries resident in Trinidad and Tobago also participated in the event. These countries are:
Trinidad and Tobago
Following introductory remarks by The Honourable Wade Mark, MP, Speaker of the House and Senator the Honourable Timothy Hamel-Smith, President of the House, Dr Anthony Gonzales of the Institute of International Relations, University of the West Indies delivered a presentation which explored the history, role and function of the Commonwealth. During the formal Q&A session afterwards, His Excellency Ross Tysoe and several High Commissioners present fielded a series of interesting and well-researched questions from the students in attendance.
His Excellency Ross Tysoe and Dr. Anthony Gonzales of the Institute of International Relations discuss the finer points of the Australia - CARICOM relationship during the Commonwealth Day Commemoration Event
Attendees werethen invited to visit the various booths on display. Public Diplomacy and Policy/Research Officer, Ms Gwendolene Roberts facilitated the information awareness booth on Australia and all things Australian along with HE Tysoe and Deputy Head of Mission, Ms Leona Landers.
An Australian education is closer than you think!
The Australian High Commission takes this opportunity to thank the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association and Speaker, The Honourable Wade Mark, MP, for extending the invitation to participate in this successful event.
International Women's Day Celebrations
On Friday 7 March, Deputy Head Of Mission, Ms Leona Landers hosted an afternoon tea for 70 invited guests in celebration of International Womens Day 2014. Under the theme 'Inspiring Change - for equal recognition of women in the arts', Ms Marina Salandy-Brown, a leading local arts and public media commentator, and former BBC Radio Producer and Presenter was the feature speaker. Sharing with those present, the challenges she faced as a young Trinidadian woman during her earlier career with the BBC, Ms Salandy-Brown took the guests on a journey from the 1970s women's rights movements up to the present day.
Ms Marina Salandy-Brown, feature speaker and Deputy Head of Mission, Ms Leona Landers
In keeping with the arts theme, Ms Landers then honoured Trinidadian Poet Laureate, Ms Eintou Pearl Springer, for her contribution to the advancement of women and women's rights. Ms Springer is also a noted playwright and cultural activist.
Ms Eintou Pearl Springer (c) is flanked by Ms Dara Healy, Founder of IDAKEDA (l) and Deputy Head of Mission, Ms Leona Landers (r)
Australian Aboriginal poet, the late Ms Oodgeroo Noonuccal, whose writings have inspired, and continues to inspire, generations of women across the globe was also honoured with a reading. In her honour, guests received a commemorative bookmark inscribed with the words of the poem, A Song of Hope.
The family and staff of the Australian High Commission wish to thank all those who contributed to the success of its International Women's Day event.
For more information on the International Women's Day click here.
Australian Government Funding changing lives for women with Cervical Cancer in Grenada and Dominica
The Manager and President of the HCC recently returned from country visits to Grenada and Dominica where they were able to see first-hand how funds provided by the Australian Direct AID Program (managed by the HCC) are contributing to a coordinated multi-faceted community based response to cervical cancer.
In Grenada, prevention and advocacy are the focus of the Grenada Cancer Society's sub project which has already produced a radio jingle to be launched nationally in March. A documentary featuring survivors of cervical cancer is currently under development and will shed light on the journey of women diagnosed with the disease in that country. Dr Barrymore Mc Barnette, a local physician and president of the GCS noted that a recent cervical cancer study revealed that cervical cancer related mortality is on the rise and attributed this to late screening, delayed treatment and limited treatment options in the island.
In addition to the jingle and documentary, the GCS is working with NGO partners and the Ministry of Health to develop evidence informed awareness materials to combat cervical cancer myths and encourage pap testing among women in rural areas. While in Grenada, the HCC was pleased to meet with the GCS Executive Board; the Minister of Health, Honourable Dr Clarice Modeste; Ms. Shere-ann Noel of CC-6 Television; and NCD NGOs, Planned Parenthood, Grenada National Organisation of Women, Central Health Grenada, and the Grenada Diabetes Association.
In Dominica, the focus is on meeting some of the treatment needs of underserved women diagnosed with cervical cancer. The Dominica Cancer Society is working in partnership with the local hospital oncologist Dr Malaka to provide treatment vouchers for women with greatest need. The project is also highly collaborative with community partners and the Ministry of Health, supporting the development of educational materials and the training of outreach volunteers which will serve to expand the work of the DCS in this area. Tina Alexander of the Executive Board remarked that the 'side effects' of the project have been so positive - including strengthening the capacity of the DCS around cervical cancer, creating new partnerships, and building the operational capacity of the organisation with the purchase of much needed equipment. Vinna Royer, Ex-President and member noted that membership in the HCC has allowed the DCS to cultivate critical partnerships with CSOs across the Caribbean including the Cancer Institute of Guyana (also a sub-grantee on this project) where DCS has referred cervical cancer patients for treatment.
High Commissioner Ross Tysoe, AO also visited the Dominica Cancer Society during his visit to the Commonwealth of Dominica during February 2014. During his visit he was able to meet with the leadership team of the Dominica Cancer Society and discuss the impact of the ongoing collaboration as well as areas for future engagement.
For more information on the collaboration between the Australian High Commission HCC, and the HCC's work in the region, click here.
The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust Australia
The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust has been established to celebrate Her Majesty the Queen’s unrivalled 60 year contribution to the Commonwealth.
The Queen has served as Head of the Commonwealth for 60 years. During that time she has won the respect and admiration of many Australians for her outstanding life of public service. In 1954, just two years after she became Queen, she became the first reigning monarch ever to visit Australia. Since then, she has been a frequent visitor to our country. Her visit last year with Prince Phillip to celebrate her Diamond Jubilee marked her 16th journey down under.
More information or to be part of this project, click here.
Media Releases from the Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs can be found here.
Media Releases from the Australian Minister for Trade and Investment can be found here.
Speeches from the Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs can be found here.
Speeches from the Australian Minister for Trade and Investment can be found here.