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The G20 Summit has finished in St Petersburg, and as the hydrofoils pulled away from the shore, thoughts turned to the Brisbane Summit in 2014. Well, mine did. Not many others, I’ll admit. Foreign minister Bob Carr mysteriously cancelled his final leader’s press conference and retired to his villa, leaving me to explain the pressures of the Federal election to Reuters. Awkward.

There is a difference in diplomatic terms between being respectful of Russia’s host year; and being so silent and absent that people think we are departing from our years of patient bipartisan political investment in the G20.

Nevertheless, Australia begins...

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