Higgins to boycott Australian PM’s Dáil address

Socialist Party TD Joe Higgins has said he will boycott tomorrow's address to the Dáil by Australian Prime Minister John Howard.

Mr Howard is due to make the address as part of a three-day official visit to Ireland.

Politicians opposed the Iraq war have expressed regret that Mr Howard will not be making himself available for questions about Australia's ongoing role in the US/British occupation of the country.

Mr Higgins has now said he will boycott the speech, partly due to Australia's involvement in the war, but also for other reasons.

He says recent Australian legislation on worker's rights is "criminal", while he has also accused Australia of stealing oil and gas from the poor people of East Timor.

Meanwhile, other left-wing groups including Sinn Féin are expected to take part in an anti-war demonstration outside the Dáil to coincide with Mr Howard's address.

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