Young Journalists Club | Latest news of Iran and world

News ID: 27804
Publish Date: 10:13 - 23 August 2018
TEHRAN, August 23 - Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull stubbornly clung to power on Thursday as senior ministers deserted him, saying he would hold a second leadership vote on Friday only if he received a letter signed by the majority of the ruling Liberal party.

Australian PM stubbornly clings to power, offers possible second leadership voteTEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) - Turnbull narrowly won a leadership vote on Tuesday against former home affairs minister Peter Dutton. Dutton and senior ministers on Thursday called for a second ballot.

Key Turnbull supporter Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said Turnbull no longer had majority party support and that Dutton was now the best person to lead the conservative government to the next election, due by May 2019.

Several ministers have tendered their resignation. The leadership crisis saw the government adjourn parliament on Thursday until September.

Turnbull said if he received a letter requesting a fresh vote with the signatures of 43 Liberal Party lawmakers, he would call a party meeting for midday Friday (0200 GMT). If a leadership spill motion was then passed, he would not stand in the vote.

Australian media reported on Thursday that Treasurer Scott Morrison would be a surprise challenger for the top job.

Morrison has been a Turnbull supporter, but has reportedly long held ambitions on the prime ministership.

Whoever emerges as Australia's next prime minister, they will become the country's sixth prime minister in less than a decade. None of those, which includes two stints for Labor leader Kevin Rudd, have served a full term in office.

"Australians will be rightly appalled by what they are witnessing in their parliament," Turnbull told reporters in Canberra.

The political revolving door has angered and frustrated voters and the business sector.

The political uncertainty clouded the outlook for investors who punished the Australian dollar , sending it 0.9 percent lower to $0.7283. The Aussie was the worst performing major currency on Thursday.

Australian shares <.AXJO> slipped 0.2 percent.

"For everybody in the country what is happening in Canberra is disappointing and frustrating. Business likes certainty and confidence in what happens in the future.

Anytime we see uncertainty like what is happening in Canberra it is not helpful," said Qantas CEO Alan Joyce.

Source: Reuters

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