May 10, 2001 |
Thousands of dignitaries gathered Wednesday to commemorate the first sitting of Australia's Federal Parliament 100 years ago--the high point in a year of festivities that has seen the country's political roots come under fire. Australia's political, cultural and business leaders listened to bands and patriotic speeches in Melbourne's Royal Exhibition Building to honor the launch of the legislature in the same vast hall exactly a century earlier.
November 7, 1999 |
Australians awoke today to the realization that their largely pro-republican country had voted decisively to retain the British monarch as head of state for the foreseeable future. With four-fifths of the vote counted, tallies in the country's Saturday referendum showed that 55% had voted to retain Queen Elizabeth II as head of state rather than allow the political elite to appoint a home-grown president.
August 27, 1999 |
The Australian Parliament recognized 200 years of injustice to the country's indigenous people Thursday, saying it regretted "the most blemished chapter" in the nation's history. The historic motion came the same day that an Aboriginal woman taken from her mother at birth lost a legal battle considered crucial for Australia's so-called "stolen generations."
July 26, 1999 |
The Australian government said a further 16.6% of Telstra Corp., the nation's top-ranked telecommunications company, will go on sale in mid-to-late October, raising an estimated $10 billion. "This sale will be the largest share offer in Australia's history and one of the largest offerings of its kind in the world this year," Finance Minister John Fahey said. After the sale the government will continue to hold about 51% of Telstra. A maximum of 2.
October 4, 1998 |
Overcoming resistance to a controversial tax reform plan, the conservative coalition government headed by Prime Minister John Howard won reelection by a narrow margin Saturday, according to incomplete reports on Australian federal elections.
October 3, 1998 |
Vegemite is a salty, black yeast paste that millions of Australians religiously spread on their breakfast toast. The sticky substance, approached warily by those who do not live here, also is a kind of national symbol, or "icon" as the Australians call it, that helps define this island continent. For nearly half a century, Australians have been comforted by a bouncy radio-television commercial jingle, "Happy Little Vegemites," that serves as a unifying national ditty.