The federal government has faced a day of backlash against its tough budget and asylum seeker policy, with protests staged in Melbourne and Perth.
A protester angry about job losses and university fees lunged at Foreign Minister Julie Bishop’s car as she left a C20 summit in Melbourne on Friday.
The man was arrested in the middle of the street, with a group of a dozen protesters chanting “This is a peaceful protest” and then “Let him go” as he was being handled by police.
— Nine News Australia (@9NewsAUS) June 20, 2014
In Fremantle, south of Perth, refugee advocates picketed near a press conference held by Immigration Minister Scott Morrison where he presided at the naming ceremony of the Australian Customs and Border Protection vessel Thaiyak.
One protester said it was a cruel irony the ceremony, paid for with taxpayer’s money, was being held on World Refugee Day.
— SBS News (@SBSNews) June 20, 2014
In Perth, hundreds of seniors packed the Town Hall to rally against cuts to concessions while students angry at slashed education funding planned to disrupt an exclusive $250-a-head business luncheon with Finance Minister Mathias Cormann.
They vowed to mock “the brazen reverse-Robin Hood nature of the budget by donning top hats and smoking fake cigars”.
Mr Cormann and Treasurer Joe Hockey raised eyebrows when they were spotted smoking cigars outside Canberra’s Parliament House before the budget was handed down.
The budget has been described as having the toughest impact on Australians in almost two decades.