Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese Thursday became the first foreign minister to address Parliament in Papa New Guinea. Albanese used the address to call for a united front on security, economic issues and climate change.After their recent elections, both Albanese and Papa New Guinea Prime Minister James Marape have revisited the strong ties between the countries, both culturally and historically.The Prime Ministers agreed to a Joint Statement of Commitment to negotiate a Bilateral Security Treaty. The Treaty will expand the existing security treaty between the countries and “intensify bilateral cooperation on policing, law and justice.” Further, Albanese reaffirmed Australia’s commitment to Papa New Guinea women with a new five-year program to bolster women’s rights, PNG Women Lead. Both Prime Ministers recognized the “critical importance of gender equality to sustainable development outcomes.”The Treaty will prioritize continued concurrent work on safety in the region, naming a “safe, stable, peaceful, and prosperous Indo-Pacific.” The Treaty contains 11 goals, including:Assisting both countries “protect and enhance [their] sovereignty and resilience.”
Committing to a higher level of communication and sharing information on regional security threats.
Transparency regarding treaty practices and national laws.The statement released between the Prime Ministers concludes that the key elements of the negotiations will have concluded by April 30, 2023.

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