Tony Abbott mocked on social media over 'cringe-worthy' photo
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has been taken to task on social media for tweeting a "cringe-worthy" photo of himself with Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe posing by a giant tyre.
Abbott travelled with Abe on Wednesday to Western Australia, where they visited Rio Tinto's West Angelas mine.
The trip was designed to reinforce the importance of Australian iron ore to Japan - but it was the leaders' pose against a giant tyre, each with a leg raised to show off their Australian boots, that drew the most attention.
"The unlikely pair certainly hit it off, giggling over glasses of West Australian wine, getting sloppy on sake, and bonding at Australia's beautiful backdrops," said news.com.au
"But this cringe-worthy corker posted by the PM last night has yet another Abbott embarrassment written all over it."
The picture shows the two conservative leaders showing off boots made by Australian company RM Williams.
Fellow Twitter users saw the funny side. "Apparently it was about the boots. Australian PM Tony Abbott in bizarre crotch shot photo op," tweeted one.