Republic of Australia?
February 4, 1997
Web posted at: 7:10 p.m. EST (0010 GMT)
CANBERRA, Australia (CNN) -- Australia's government Tuesday
said it would hold a national convention this year to
consider how to become a republic, a move that would sever
more than 200 years of constitutional ties with former
colonial power Britain. Prime Minister John Howard told
Parliament the constitutional convention would be held in
November or December.
Members of the Australian Republican Movement welcomed the
move but said they preferred a direct national vote. Opinion
polls show about half of Australian voters want a republic,
but also that they think the country faces more pressing
Howard said his Liberal-National government would appoint
half the convention's delegates, including several Aborigines
and young Australians aged between 18 and 25. The other half
would be chosen by voters in a voluntary postal ballot.
Reuters contributed to this report.
Related sites:Note: Pages will open in a new browser window
External sites are not endorsed by CNN Interactive.
© 1997 Cable News Network, Inc.
All Rights Reserved.