Australian PM rejects Thunberg's comments on bushfire, climate

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morriso.(File Photo: IANS)
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. Image source: IANS
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Canberra: Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Monday dismissed Swedish teen activist Greta Thunberg's social media comments, where she linked the blazing bushfires in Australia to climate change.

When asked about Thunberg's comments, Morrison said that he would remain focused on Australia's interests, reports Xinhua news agency.

"Australia and the Australian government will set our policies based on Australia's national interests, on what Australia needs to do," Morrison told reporters while visiting evacuees in the state of New South Wales (NSW) on Monday.

"That's where I keep my focus. It's not for me to make commentaries on what those outside of Australia think that Australia should do."

On Sunday, 16-year-old Thunberg posted on social media accompanied by a news story regarding the Australian fires -- "not even catastrophes like these seem to bring any political action. How is this possible?"

"Because we still fail to make the connection between the climate crisis and increased extreme weather events and nature disasters like the #Australia Fires," she said.

The post garnered over 160,000 likes and more than 50,000 shares, and sparked heated discussion online.

Without directly referring to Thunberg, Morrison remained staunchly committed to his defence of balancing climate concerns with that of the national economy.

"I'm not here to try to impress people overseas," he said.

"I'm here to do the right job for Australians and put them first, and that means putting the environment in which we live at the top of the agenda, along with the economy in which people live at the top of the agenda."

Thunberg was named TIME Magazine person of the year, and has also recently returned from a global tour where she addressed world leaders about the importance of solving climate change for the benefit of future generations.

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