Australian law firm in republican row

Partners at Australian firm Clayton Utz have pledged to back one of their clerks who has been barred from legal practice because he refuses to swear an oath of allegiance to the Queen.

Australia's Court of Appeal have rejected Republican pleas that Carl Moller should be allowed to exempt himself from taking an oath as part of an admission ceremony to practice law in Victoria.

The Court ruled that the oath was to the Queen as Queen of Australia, not Queen of England and would therefore not conflict with the oath of citizenship. The young republican refuses to take the oath, claiming it would be a violation of conscience.

Clayton Utz partner, Christopher Dale reportedly says the oath of allegiance is anomalous, since it is not required in England nor in several other Australian states.

The firm is now calling for an urgent review of the admission ceremony.