Kevin Rudd

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Kevin Rudd (2013)

Kevin Michael Rudd (born September 21, 1957 in Nambour , Queensland , Australia ) is a former Australian politician and former diplomat. He was Prime Minister of Australia from December 3, 2007 to June 24, 2010 and from June 27, 2013 to September 8, 2013.

Rudd was parliamentary chairman of the Australian Labor Party from December 2006 to June 24, 2010 , and he held this office again from June 26, 2013 to September 13, 2013. From September 14, 2010 to February 22, 2012 he served as Foreign Minister in Prime Minister Gillard's cabinet .

Rudd embarked on a professional career as a diplomat, is a trained sinologist and speaks fluent standard Chinese .

Early life

Kevin Rudd is the youngest son of Albert (Bert) and Margaret Rudd, née DeVere. He grew up on a farm near Eumundi in Queensland . At the age of 11, his father who was a member of the country party died . His mother worked as a nurse at Brisbane Mater Hospital after her husband's death . Rudd attended a Catholic school in Brisbane , Marist Brothers College Ashgrove , for two years . When his mother was working at Nambour Hospital in Nambour , Rudd graduated from Nambour State High School . Then he lived in Sydney for a year . She then studied Chinese history and the Chinese language at the Australian National University in Canberra . He completed his studies as a Bachelor of Arts (Asian Studies) with an excellent certificate.

In 1981 he married Thérèse Rein, with whom he has three children.

Professional background

In 1981 Kevin Rudd began his professional career as a diplomat at the Australian Foreign Ministry. He worked at the embassies in Stockholm and then in Beijing . In 1986 he returned to Canberra. In 1988, Kevin Rudd was promoted to Counselor in the Australian Diplomatic Service.

Political career

Career start

Kevin Rudd joined the Australian Labor Party in 1972 at the age of 15 .

In 1988, Kevin Rudd served on Wayne Goss's campaign team , who won the 1989 election as Queensland Prime Minister . Kevin Rudd became his Chancellery Minister and General Director of the Cabinet Office from 1991 to 1995.

From 1993 Rudd was responsible for Asian languages ​​in schools under the Australian government of Paul Keating . In 1996 he was appointed by his party for the Griffith constituency through the resignation of a longtime Member of Parliament as his successor for the Australian House of Representatives (Australian Parliament). In 1998, Kevin Rudd won the election and entered Parliament at the age of 41; In 2001 he was re-elected. In November 2011, Rudd was appointed Shadow Minister for Foreign Relations by the Labor Party, in December 2003 for international security and in June 2005 for trade.

On December 4, 2006, Kevin Rudd was elected 19th chairman of the Australian Labor Party.

prime minister

Rudd with Russian President Dmitri Medvedev (2009)

The Labor Party won the general election on November 24, 2007 , and on December 3, 2007 Rudd was sworn in to succeed John Howard as the 26th Prime Minister of Australia. His cabinet consisted of 29 ministries.

In November 2007, Rudd announced at the beginning of his tenure that he would make a formal apology for the child abductions , massacres and abuse of the Australian Aborigines since British colonization in 1788. On February 13, 2008, he kept his announcement and apologized on behalf of the Australian government in a speech to the Australian Parliament for the injustice done over two centuries. Rudd's predecessor, John Howard , had always refused such an apology.

The first official act of his government was the ratification of the Kyoto Protocol , which his predecessor had rejected .

Another major concern of Rudd was defense policy. After taking office, he tasked Defense Minister Joel Fitzgibbon with the preparation of a new white paper , which the government published on May 2, 2009. This reflects, among other things, Rudd's election promise to permanently increase the country's defense budget and strengthen Australia's position in the Pacific region. In the context of the latter, relations with China cooled as the People's Republic of China viewed the document as a potential threat.


On the evening of June 23, 2010, rumors suddenly grew that the right wing of the party in particular would immediately replace Rudd. As the evening progressed, these rumors became a certainty and Julia Gillard was soon seen as the favorite for a challenge from Rudd.

The following morning, June 24, 2010, a meeting of the Labor Party's parliamentary group was called. At that meeting it became clear that Gillard had broader support than Rudd. Rudd did not stand for re-election, resigned as party chairman and prime minister and resigned from the government.

Foreign minister

After the following parliamentary elections on August 21, 2010 , Labor was able to maintain its position in government after losing its absolute majority thanks to the support of independent MPs. Rudd was appointed foreign minister by the confirmed Prime Minister Gillard.

Analogous to the slogan of his 2007 election campaign, Kevin 07 , Rudd was nicknamed Kevin 747 , which refers to the Boeing 747 wide-body aircraft, because of his frequent air travel .

On February 22, 2012, he resigned from the post of Foreign Minister . After Rudd had expressed doubts about Prime Minister Gillard's ability to win the next election, she scheduled a vote on February 27, 2012 on the party presidency in Labor's parliamentary group. She won this with 71 votes for herself against 31 for Rudd. Rudd subsequently stated that he did not intend to run against Gillard again in a vote for a leadership position.

Second term as Prime Minister

On June 26, 2013, Rudd applied again in a vote of his parliamentary group for the party chairmanship against Gillard. He won them with 57 to 45 votes. The next day he took over the office of Prime Minister again. Rudd held office until the next general election in Australia and lost this election to his challenger Tony Abbott of the liberal-conservative Liberal Party of Australia and resigned on September 8, 2013 from the office of Prime Minister. A little later, he also renounced the mandate he had won in the election.

Web links

Commons : Kevin Rudd  - Collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. a b c : Before Office , in English, accessed June 26, 2013
  2. Financial Times Deutschland: Australia's government wants to apologize to Aborigines ( memento of January 14, 2012 in the Internet Archive ), February 10, 2008
  3. Australia formally apologizes to indigenous people for the first time , February 13, 2008
  4. Nick Squires: New PM Kevin Rudd to apologize to Aborigines The Telegraph, November 27, 2007
  5. Sydney Morning Herald: Kyoto Protocol 'next to useless': PM February 16, 2005
  6. uq / AFP: Australia: New Prime Minister ratifies Kyoto Protocol. In: Focus Online . December 3, 2007, accessed October 14, 2018 .
  7. cf. O.V .: Sharpening the koala's claws , in: The Economist Online , May 7, 2009. Accessed May 13, 2009.
  8. The Australian , Simon Canning: Adman Neil Lawrence goes from Kevin 07 to 747s with Qantas , August 19, 2011, accessed June 28, 2013
  9. Where is Kevin 747? ( Memento of February 8, 2011 in the Internet Archive )
  10. Samantha Maiden: Kevin '747' takes off before Rudd boards plane , The Australian , September 16, 2010
  11. Australia's Mandarin "Assassinated"
  12. Kevin Rudd ousts Australia Prime Minister Julia Gillard. BBC , June 26, 2013, accessed June 26, 2013 .
  13. Emma Griffiths: Kevin Rudd produces fresh uncertainty over election date, Tony Abbott says election 'can't come soon enough'. ABC , June 27, 2013, accessed June 27, 2013 .