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Dublin: 7 °C Thursday 21 November, 2019
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Australian broadcaster criticised over prime minister Gillard 'sex scene'

A comedy scene depicting a fictional version of the prime minister draped in an Australian flag has been heavily criticised.

The infamous scene
The infamous scene
Image: via ABC screengrab

AUSTRALIA’S NATIONAL BROADCASTER is under fire after it aired a television comedy scene with a fictional version of prime minister Julia Gillard draped in the country’s flag after having sex.

Reuters reports that the Australia Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) is accused of overstepping the mark with the scene from the comedy programme ‘At Home with Julia’ in which Gillard and her partner Tim Mathieson - played by actors – are shown cuddling whilst covered by the national flag.

‘At Home With Julia’ is a fictional account of the home life of Australia’s first female leader but members of the governing coalition believe the scene is offensive no matter who the country’s leader is, news.com.au reports.

The incident seems to have united political parties in Australia with the Conservative opposition similarly offended by the pictures. One MP reportedly said:

“Having sex in the prime minister’s office under the Australian flag is the last straw for me. It is sick. I’m offended and we should take a stand”

The ABC has defended the scene and the use of the flag telling the Australian Herald Sun that if its okay for others to drape themselves in the flag for all manner of occassions, there’s no reason why the ‘prime minister’ can’t do it “as a symbol of love.”

One monarchist professor told the paper the show went “a bit far” with the scene although there is no law against desecrating the national flag with previous attempts to create such laws failing in parliament.

Gillard herself has declined to comment on the issue saying she won’t be watching the programme.

She  told ABC Radio that aspects of the first episode of the series were funny but that “I’ve got more to do than sit around watching ABC TV,” news.com.au quotes her as saying.

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Hugh O'Connell

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