U.K.’s Boris Johnson Tours Sydney Opera House Before Meetings

U.K. Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian pose for a photograph at the Sydney Opera House on July 26, 2017.

Photographer: Dan Himbrechts - Pool/Getty Images

Sydney (AP) -- British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson toured the Sydney Opera House on Wednesday ahead of high-level bilateral security talks with Australian officials.

The former London mayor and New South Wales state Premier Gladys Berejiklian were shown ongoing upgrades to the opera house's Joan Sutherland Theatre that are being undertaken by British company Laing O'Rourke.

Johnson described Sydney as "an unbelievable, mind-blowingly beautiful city."

"It's not over until the fat lady sings," Johnson joked while asking how long the Opera House upgrade would take.

Wednesday's tour was to be followed by a bilateral meeting with Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop.

On Thursday, Johnson and Bishop will be joined by British Defense Secretary Michael Fallon and Australian Defense Minister Maris Payne for annual talks.

Australian officials said Thursday's meeting would focus on counterterrorism, Europe's future and the threat posed by North Korea, as well as British and Australian military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Johnson arrived in Sydney on Tuesday after visits to Japan and New Zealand.

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