While Andrew Robb describes Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s criticisms of the Greens as ‘contrived’, he accuses the Greens of anti-semitism.
It is NSW Greens policy to support a boycott of the state of Israel.
Senator elect Leigh Rhiannon told online opinion site New Matilda that the Greens could have campaigned better around the NSW Greens policy.
“Collectively we didn’t do enough to amplify support for [a boycott] and show that this is part of an international movement,” she is quoted as saying.
“This creeping anti-semitism I think is something we don’t need in Australia,” says Andrew Robb.
“The boycott is driven, in my view, strong ant-Israel views that are starting to emerge in parts of the community,” he says.
“The fact that the Greens, not only this one Senator, but the fact that the NSW state conference of the Greens has adopted a resolution calling on a boycott – it’s a very extremist position,” says Andrew Robb.
Newly elected NSW Government member Chris Hartcher has reiterated his intention to hold Marrickville Council to account over its support of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel.
Earlier this month, then shadow minister for inter governmental relations told The AJN he was “putting Marrickville Council on notice”.
“I don’t intend to allow councillors to waste ratepayers’ money on this sort of thing if the NSW Coalition is elected to form government next month,” he said at the time.
When contacted by The AJN this week, Hartcher reiterated that if he is appointed as minister, he “will move quickly on the issue of Marrickville Council”.
Under Section 434 of the Local Government Act, a minister can ask councils to account for particular practices.