ANU/CANBERRA TIMES MEET THE AUTHOR
Annika Smethurst will be in conversation with Mark Kenny on Annika’s essay On Secrets. On June 4 2019, Federal Police raided the home of Walkley award-winning journalist Annika Smethurst, changing her life forever.
Smethurst was expecting a cleaner – instead it was the federal police with a warrant. Five of them turned her place inside out, including going through her underwear drawer. A year before Smethurst had written an article about a proposal to allow the Australian Signals Directorate to spy on Australians. The AFP was investigating the possibility of the communication of classified material.
Smethurst became the accidental poster woman for press freedom with her employer calling it it a ‘dangerous act of intimidation’. On April 15 2020, the High Court ruled the warrant invalid and on 27 May 2020 the AFP announced that Smethurst would not be charged over her stories that “… relied on classified intelligence documents”.
In On Secrets Annika Smethurst will discuss with Mark Kenny the impact this invasion has had on her life and examine the importance of press freedom.
Annika Smethurst is National Political Editor of News Corp Australia and the Daily Telegraph’s and Sunday Herald Sun’s political editor. She is a double Walkley award winner and has two Melbourne Quill awards for political reporting.
Mark Kenny is Professor at the Australian Studies Institute at ANU, an appointment following a high-profile journalistic career culminating in six years as chief political correspondent and national affairs editor of The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, and The Canberra Times. He is a regular on the ABC’s Insiders program, Sky News Agenda, and radio programs across the country.
Signed copies of Annika’s book will be available for sale at Harry Hartog bookshop, ANU.
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6-7pm, Tue 28 July 2020