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Australian former PM Kevin Rudd to start election campaign in Brisbane

07-21-2010 10:56 BJT

CANBERRA, July 21 (Xinhua) -- Former Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd is expected to start campaigning in his inner-city Brisbane electorate of Griffith on Wednesday, according to local media.

Rudd recently returned from a trip to the United States where he met with some high-ranking officials including United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

According to Australian Associated Press, the Liberal National Party (LNP) reportedly planned to parachute in a high-profile candidate for Griffith if Rudd did not recontest his seat.

Griffith is a safe Labor seat, which Rudd holds with a 12 percent margin.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard did not rule out campaigning alongside Rudd in his electorate in the lead-up to the Aug. 21 poll.

"I'll be campaigning around the country where I'm needed but I' m certainly available to campaign in Griffith," Gillard told Fairfax Radio.

The pair would also meet at Labor's official campaign launch.

"Of course, Kevin Rudd, as an honored former prime minister, will be there at the campaign launch, as will the other former prime ministers," Gillard said. "we'll work out seating arrangements for Bob (Hawke) and Paul (Keating) as necessary," Gillard joked, referring to recent public tension between the former Labor leaders.

Gillard on Saturday called the general election date on Aug. 21 this year.

Editor:Jin Lin |Source: Xinhua

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