Dumped prime minister Kevin Rudd has rubbished claims he sought a “sympathetic call” from Hillary Clinton when he was removed from the nation’s top job, a spokesperson says.
Reports emerged on Tuesday that Mr Rudd expected a phone call from the then-US secretary of state in the days following him being replaced as prime minister by Julia Gillard.
The reports cite newly released US State Department emails involving Mr Rudd, Mrs Clinton, both of their aides and then US ambassador to Australia Jefferey Bleich.
“Several articles have reported that in June 2010 that Mr Rudd sought a phone call from Hillary Clinton following Julia Gillard’s leadership coup,” the statement read.
“As the text of the Hillary Clinton email makes abundantly clear, former prime minister Rudd made zero request for any telephone call from Mrs Clinton.
“If any staff member made such a request of the US ambassador, then they did not do so with Mr Rudd’s authority or at his request.
I noticed some commentary today about Hillary Clinton’s emails, if you’re interested in the facts, have a look here – http://t.co/spztV87V8m
— Kevin Rudd (@MrKRudd) September 2, 2015
“By that stage, Mr Rudd had already had a long conversation with President Obama which was initiated by the president.”
The emails were released as part of a State Department investigation into Mrs Clinton’s use of a private email server to determine if classified material was stored on it.
Former US ambassador to Australia Mr Bleich said in an email dated June 30, 2010 that Mr Rudd had not heard from Mrs Clinton after Ms Gillard took over as prime minister six days earlier.
The email also quoted an aide to Mr Rudd as saying the former PM would have hoped for a sympathetic call – but also notes he had already received a call from president Barack Obama.
– with ABC