NATALIE BARR: An Australian family has been left devastated after their grandmother was killed in Israel. The body of Gatlic Carbone, was located by Israeli soldiers in the quiet kibbutz Be-Eri near the Gaza Strip border. The 66 year old was killed by members of the Hamas terror group after they stormed the village in southern Israel. It comes amid growing concerns about how Australia is being perceived on the world stage as images of pro-Palestinian rallies are broadcast globally. Let's bring in Home Affairs Minister Clare O'Neil and Shadow Finance Minister Jane Hume. Good morning to both of you. Clare, we'll start with you News of this Australian death, obviously horrific, a tragic development. What more can you tell us in your role as Home Affairs Minister?
CLARE O’NEIL: Can I just say this is heartbreaking news this morning for the family of this particular individual. Her community here in Australia. And I'm sure I speak on behalf of Jane when I just say our hearts absolutely go out to her. I'm devastated for the people who knew her, but also to the broader Jewish Australian community. We've got brothers and sisters of the Jewish religion around our country who are suffering greatly from what is a brutal, violent, abhorrent and completely unjustified act of terrorism against their country and their citizens. What has happened here is a senseless act of violence that will beget only more violence, and the Australian Government condemns it in the strongest possible terms. And I'd say again to our Jewish community, we are standing with you. We're wrapping our arms around you. And I just express my deepest condolences for what's happened here.
NATALIE BARR: Yes, Clare, there are 12,000 Australians in Israel who live there, more tourists who are just going there to enjoy life and got caught up in this. Should Australia send rescue flights?
CLARE O’NEIL: So Penny Wong is leading what is a very significant effort at the moment to undertake an assessment of how we can help protect Australians who are in Israel at the moment. And this is one of the most important priorities for us coming out of what's occurred in the previous days. Minister Wong is really hard at work on that and the Australian Government will do whatever is necessary to protect our citizens. And I just repeat again, this should never have happened. This is a brutal act of terrorism that was unprovoked and unnecessary and Australians are evidently going to be harmed by this and the Australian Government is extremely seized of that and we are working very hard to make sure that we protect Australians, not just overseas but here at home and in your work.
NATALIE BARR: Do you know if the Australian Government is considering rescue flights?
CLARE O’NEIL: So we're looking at all the options at the moment, Nat, and we're going to do whatever's necessary to make sure that we can secure the safety of Australians and that's something that Minister Wong is looking at the moment.
NATALIE BARR: Okay, Jane how concerned are you that there will be more Australian victims in this conflict now?
JANE HUME: Nat, it's almost inevitable. We know that there are thousands of Jewish Australians that are in Israel right now. We are concerned about the fact that some of them may be unable to return to Australia should they want to. Hundreds of flights have already been cancelled out of the airport from Tel Aviv by international Airlines. There are also dozens of countries that have arranged for either military or government owned or government chartered airlines to evacuate their own citizens out of Israel. Places like Argentina and Chile and Romania and Greece have all done this already. We would urge the federal government to come up with a solution to provide comfort to those Jewish Australians that are there in Israel right now that might be looking to come home and can't find a way out. We've already written, Simon Birmingham the shadow Foreign Minister, has written to Penny Wong and asked her to explain to us exactly what supports are available to Jewish Australians in Israel right now to support them at a time when they fear for their lives.
NATALIE BARR: Okay, let's talk about how people are reacting around the world, particularly in Australia, to this horror. There are growing concerns this morning about how Australia is being perceived on the world stage as images of those pro-Palestinian rallies are broadcast globally. Jane, are you. Sorry, Clare. Are you concerned about how the world is viewing us, given particularly this rally in Sydney that we're looking at the pictures now and the steps of the Opera House? These were not necessarily people who were protesting in favour of innocent Palestinians. What they were shouting was abhorrent. Should that have been allowed? Clare?
CLARE O’NEIL: Look, Nat, I would really ask people to stop this behaviour immediately. It is completely un-Australian to be doing this and I want people to remember that this is not about politics and it's not about religion. It's about common humanity and the duty that we owe to Australians, that we owe to one another to be decent. We are one of the successful, most successful multicultural countries in the world because we support one another and we think about how our behaviour affects other people in our community. And I just want people to understand that we've got Jewish Australians in our country who are hurting very deeply. How could they not be hurting very deeply after what's just happened, a violent terrorist attack on their country? And I would just ask Australians to really consider their behaviour right now. This is a time when we must come together as a country and protect and wrap our arms around the communities that have been affected by this. That is the appropriate way to behave today.
NATALIE BARR: Jane, then we had a very peaceful protest in Melbourne where people who were supporting you know, innocent Palestinians, right to determination, stood and protested in a very peaceful way. How should we deal with these protests in this current climate?
JANE HUME: All Australians, Nat, have the right to protest, peacefully. However, you have to come out and condemn any protests that supports an act of violence that is so heinous, so abhorrent, so unprovoked, and so specifically targeted at innocent civilians. How can you possibly allow a protest like that to go ahead? How can you support it? People that take to the streets essentially baying for blood in our own country. It's not only un-Australian, it is unimaginable in a modern Australia and more should be done to prevent that. Now I know we can only look at it retrospectively and it's good that the protest last night was a peaceful one. However, I would support Clare in her urge for Australians to reconsider what it is that they are supporting, what it is that they are taking to the streets to say because there are thousands of Australians, Jewish Australians that are hurting right now and we stand alongside them in solidarity.
NATALIE BARR: Okay. Well, thank you both and we'll talk to you next week.