Tony Abbott is under pressure to revisit his plans to invite Russian leader Vladimir Putin to the G20 leaders meeting in Australia.
In the wake of the shooting down of MH17 over Ukraine, and suggestions out of the United States it was done by pro-Russian separatists, there are more question marks over the Russian leader’s presence in Brisbane in November.
Mr Putin was earlier this year excluded from a meeting of the G8 over Russia’s involvement in Crimea.
But Mr Abbott, pressed on the issue today, stuck by his line that there are other international organisations that could deal with the issues surrounding the events in Ukraine.
“The aim of the G20 is to take steps to boost economic growth,” he told the ABC this morning.
In Canada last month, Mr Abbott had defended his decision to leave open the presence of Russia at the G20 leaders meeting.
“Plainly Russia has behaved badly, very badly indeed over Ukraine,” he then said.
“But the G20 is still some five months away. Let’s hope Russia behaves better in the intervening period.”