Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese announced Thursday that his government will prevent Russia from building a new embassy near Parliament in Canberra due to national security concerns.
“The government has received very clear security advice about the risks posed by a new Russian presence so close to the parliament building,” Albanese told reporters.
Failed to cancel the lease
Since 2008, Russia has been renting a plot of land near Parliament in Canberra.
The Australian government has already tried to cancel this lease, but its attempt failed.
On Thursday, Albanese said that after his government took all possible legal ways to prevent Russia from building a new embassy on this land, the only way left for it is to pass new legislation in parliament that prevents Moscow from moving forward with its project.
“We are moving quickly to ensure that the leased site does not become an official diplomatic presence,” he added.
For her part, Australian Home Minister Claire O’Neill confirmed that the new embassy that Moscow wants to build in Canberra poses a clear threat to the country’s national security.
“The main problem with the proposed second Russian embassy in Canberra is its location,” O’Neill said.
“The site is directly adjacent to the parliament building,” she added.
The current Russian embassy building is located in the Griffith area in the south of the city.
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