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Australian election likely within six weeks - Key predicts

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
John Key
John Key

Wellington, June 28 NZPA - Prime Minister John Key expects an Australian general election to take place in the next six weeks.

Former Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd stepped down last week after it became clear he would lose a party leadership vote he was forced to call.

Deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard stepped up to the top role.

Ms Gillard has indicated she would call an election soon.

Mr Key has said he would not expect the change from Mr Rudd to Ms Gillard to affect New Zealand's relationship with Australia.

He was the first world leader to congratulate Ms Gillard on Thursday, just hours after she became the first woman to take up the position.

Mr Key said he spoke to Mr Rudd on Saturday, he told TVNZ's Breakfast programme.

An election was likely within six weeks with Labour and with Ms Gillard herself scoring high in the polls, he said.

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