Senate debates

Tuesday, 17 October 2023

Statements by Senators


1:43 pm

Photo of Hollie HughesHollie Hughes (NSW, Liberal Party, Shadow Assistant Minister for Climate Change and Energy) Share this | | Hansard source

As this government stood together as one, decrying the atrocities conducted by the terrorists known as Hamas, as we took a stand in solidarity with Israel, a nation we have a long history with, an internationally recognised sovereign state, we have the Greens and Adam Bandt quick to jump in and attack Israel and its decision to defend itself from its enemies. But lo and behold, Kylea Tink, the member for North Sydney, and Dr Sophie Scamps, the member for Mackellar, nestle in behind their Green comrades—because teal, as we know, is just another shade of green. These are the sanctimonious hypocrites who sold disenfranchised Libs a lie. These are the morally superior among us that voted yes and are enlightened, unlike the rest of us, yet in their virtue they chose to defend barbarous terrorism perpetrated on an ethnic group because it somehow seems justified in lieu of other tensions between Israel and Palestine.

I am not sure how the 1,500 Jewish people in the electorate of North Sydney feel about their member's position. But these independents, just remember, your actions speak louder than words. They say the right things: 'We deplore Hamas but we want to deaths of innocents on both sides to stop.' But the teals and the Greens oppose the government's motion to condemn the Hamas attacks on Israel. What does that say? It is simply an untenable position. We hear about pre-emptive strikes from other enemies on Israel. Iran just wants the liberation of Palestine, does it? Is Hezbollah just helping the poor Palestinians? You cannot take a position like this in the middle of an assault on Israel's very existence without implying your desire to see the nation state cease. (Time expired)

1:45 pm

Photo of Fatima PaymanFatima Payman (WA, Australian Labor Party) Share this | | Hansard source

The killing of innocent civilians in Israel should be condemned and we condemn it. The killing of innocent civilians in Palestine should also be condemned and we must condemn it. The international community loudly and proudly condemned Russia's occupation of Ukraine when it started attacking Ukraine in 2014 yet today the world watches as the state of Israel deprives the entire population—men, women and children—of the basic necessities of life: food, water, electricity, gas and medicines. We must condemn it.

Israeli missiles strike residential dwellings, civilians, multistorey apartments, health facilities as well as places of worship, indiscriminately killing men, women and children. We must condemn it. Human Rights Watch confirms that Israel is using white phosphorous in Gaza. That violates the international humanitarian law prohibition. We must condemn it.

The price tag of Israel's right to defend itself cannot be the destruction of Palestine. Israel's right to defend its civilians cannot equate to the annihilation of Palestinian civilians. I hereby call for an immediate ceasefire to come into effect, alongside many world leaders and experts. Food, water, medicine and humanitarian aid need to be allowed to get through and reach the victims. Mediation and talks need to start, as obviously violence has not solved anything for the past 75 years, and a just and long-lasting solution needs to be sorted out.