'Love is a beautiful thing': Australian PM gets engaged



By Tiffanie TurnbullSydney, Feb 15: Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has announced his engagement to his partner of four years, Jodie Haydon.

He proposed at the Lodge - the prime minister's official Canberra residence - on Valentine's Day, with a ring he specially designed.

Albanese, 60, and Haydon, 45, met at a business dinner in Melbourne in 2020.

He is the first Australian leader to get engaged while in office.

Albanese shared the news on social media with a selfie, captioned: "She said yes."

"We are thrilled and excited to share this news and look forward to spending the rest of our lives together. We are so lucky to have found each other," the pair later said in a joint statement.

Colleagues from across the parliament, New Zealand leader Christopher Luxon and TV chef Nigella Lawson are among those who have congratulated the couple.

"Love is a beautiful thing. I'm so happy for you both!" wrote Foreign Minister Penny Wong.

Albanese has a son, 23-year-old Nathan Albanese, with former New South Wales deputy premier Carmel Tebbutt, whom he separated from in 2019 after 19 years of marriage.

The Labor Party leader has previously detailed how he and Haydon - who has worked in the financial services industry - met and bonded a year later, over a shared love of their National Rugby League team.

He was speaking at a function in 2020 when he asked the audience if any South Sydney Rabbitohs fans were in the room, to which Haydon yelled out: "Up the Rabbitohs."

The pair kept a low profile in the early days of their relationship before Haydon joined Albanese on the campaign trail in 2022, and on his international trips as prime minister since.

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