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Thousands march against sexual assault in Australia

March 16, 2021 5:46 am

Tens of thousands of people have turned out to marches across Australia, protesting against the sexual abuse and harassment of women in the country.

They were spurred by a recent wave of allegations of sexual assault, centred around Australia’s parliament.

The allegations have focused scrutiny on the conservative government.

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The protests were organised a week ago, after Attorney General Christian Porter revealed he was the subject of a 1988 rape allegation – which he denies.

A separate case – that of Brittany Higgins, an ex-political adviser who alleged in February that she was raped in a minister’s office in 2019 – has also fuelled public anger.

Protesters feel the government’s response to the sexual assault allegations has been inadequate.

Ms Higgins spoke to the thousands of protesters outside Parliament House on Monday, saying: “There is a horrible societal acceptance of sexual violence experienced by women in Australia.”

“My story was on the front page for the sole reason that it was a painful reminder to women that if it can happen in Parliament House, it can truly happen anywhere.”

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