Australia’s diplomatic corps has reportedly been buzzing over an incident in which Australia’s ambassador to France, who is gay, was instructed not to bring his partner to a greeting party for Prime Minister Tony Abbott on a visit to Paris last month.
The ambassador, Stephen Brady, was waiting on the tarmac with his partner Peter Stephens on Anzac Day at the appointed time but was told Stephens should stay in the car, according to a report by Peter Hartcher in the Sydney Morning Herald.
Brady, a well-known senior figure in the Australian public service, offered his resignation to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade after the incident, but it has been rejected.
The PM’s arrival was a non-ceremonial event and France’s representation was from a junior official. The report explains that Abbott has previously hosted dinner for Brady and Stephens for their official send-off to Paris, but it is unlikely to stop this being a source of questions about the order from the PM’s office, whose micromanaging style was at the centre of much of the discontent before the challenge to Abbott’s leadership earlier this year.
“Diplomats and officials in Canberra and abroad have been discussing a number of stories of micromanagement by the prime minister’s travelling party on his Europe trip,” the SMH reports.
The full story’s here.
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