Daily News Roundup

May 28, 2019

TUESDAY,  MAY 28

South Australia’s Kirsty Boden is being posthumously awarded one of the highest honours in the nursing profession for her bravery and sacrifice in the London Bridge terrorist attack.

Boden was killed in the attack carried out by terrorists inspired by Islamic State on the night of June 3, 2017, and became known as “the angel of London Bridge” in its aftermath.

She has been posthumously honoured with a Florence Nightingale Medal — which is considered one of the highest international distinctions a nurse can receive.

The 28-year-old nurse from Loxton in South Australia’s Riverland, was fatally stabbed while she was helping others during the attack two years ago.

Eight people died in the attack and an inquest is underway.

The Red Cross awards also recognised three Australian nurses who have worked in disaster zones across Africa and the Middle East — Denise Moyle, Yvonne Ginifer and Cristina de Leon.

International director at Australian Red Cross Peter Walton said the medal showcased exceptional courage and dedication to victims.

“Our Australian Red Cross nurses have played an important role in responding to some of the world’s most challenging armed conflicts and disasters over more than a hundred years,” he said.

“From Sudan to Afghanistan, Pakistan and Yemen, they have helped children survive horrific injuries in wars and earthquakes, cared for patients suffering with Ebola and cholera, saving countless lives with education on hygiene and disease prevention.”

Mr Walton said Boden was a worthy recipient of the medal and it acknowledged her “incredible passion and courage”.

“Whilst I didn’t know Kirsty myself, it was very clear she was awarded the medal because of her dedication for caring to other people,” he said.

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Victorian Senator Bridget McKenzie will become the first woman to serve as Agriculture Minister when she is sworn in with the new Cabinet on Wednesday.

And the Deputy Nationals leader said an immediate focus was the drought.

She said that as a person of faith, she did pray for rain like Nationals leader Michael McCormack but also, like Mr McCormack, she believed in practical responses.

“Whilst I personally pray for rain, I think as Minister for Agriculture, working closely with David Littleproud as minister responsible for the drought taskforce, I believe in getting practical responses on the ground to those farmers doing it tough at the moment,” she said.

“One of many policies, I will always pray for rain, I pray for lots of things. I think people should pray more, it’s a good thing to pray,” Mr McCormack said.

“The fact is, we’ve got to do more than pray. We’ve got to put in the right policies, we’ve got to be practical and pragmatic about it and that’s what we’re doing … we’re keeping a watchful eye on it.”

Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s decision to give Senator McKenzie the agriculture portfolio comes at the expense of Queensland Nationals MP David Littleproud, who has held the job for 16 months.

“The deputy leader of the National Party wanted agriculture and when you’re the deputy leader you get to pick, that is only fair, and I know Bridget will do a good job,” Mr Littleproud said.

Mr Littleproud remains in Cabinet as Minister for Water Resources, Drought, Rural Finance, Natural Disaster and Emergency Management.

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US President Donald Trump has credited economic sanctions for curbing Iranian aggression in the region, and says a deal on its nuclear program is possible.

Mr Trump was reported as saying at a news conference in Japan that he believed Iran would like to make a deal, “and I think that’s very smart of them, and I think that’s a possibility to happen”.

“It has a chance to be a great country with the same leadership,” Trump said. “We aren’t looking for regime change – I just want to make that clear. We are looking for no nuclear weapons.”

In Tehran, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Iran was not seeking nuclear weapons, which its supreme leader had banned in an edict.

Zarif added on Twitter that US policies were hurting the Iranian people and causing regional tensions.

“Actions–not words–will show whether or not that’s @realDonaldTrump’s intent,” Zarif said.

President Hassan Rouhani said in October the US was seeking “regime change” in Iran, adding that the current US administration was the most hostile that the Islamic Republic had faced in its four decades.

Tensions have risen between Iran and the US after this month’s attack on oil tankers in the Gulf region.

Washington, a firm backer of Tehran’s regional rival Saudi Arabia, has blamed the attacks on Iran, which denies the accusations.

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