CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — An Australian senator had a uncooked egg cracked over his head and faces censure from his fellow lawmakers after sparking outrage by blaming Muslim immigration for the New Zealand mosque shootings.
Sen. Fraser Anning got here beneath blistering criticism over tweets on Friday together with one which mentioned, “Does anyone still dispute the link between Muslim immigration and violence?”
“The real cause of the bloodshed on New Zealand streets today is the immigration program which allowed Muslim fanatics to migrate to New Zealand in the first place,” he mentioned in a press release.
Television cameras caught a 17-year-old boy breaking an egg on Anning’s head and briefly struggling with the impartial senator whereas he was holding a information convention Saturday in Melbourne.
Police mentioned the boy was arrested however was launched with out cost pending an extra investigation. No motive was supplied for the egging.
The authorities and opposition get together agreed to cross a censure movement towards Anning over his stance on the Christchurch shootings when Parliament resumes in April.
While such a reprimand is a symbolic gesture, the main events anticipate to reveal how remoted Anning’s views are amongst Australia’s 226 federal lawmakers. The main events’ help ensures the censure movement shall be handed by each chambers.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison mentioned he denounced Anning’s feedback.
“In his conflation of this horrendous terrorist attack with issues of immigration, in his attack on Islamic faith specifically — these comments are appalling and they’re ugly and they have no place in Australia, in the Australian Parliament,” Morrison mentioned. “He should be, frankly, ashamed of himself.”
Bilal Rauf, spokesman for the Australian National Imams Council, the nation’s high Muslim group, likened the senator’s views to the rambling manifesto revealed on-line by suspect Brenton Tarrant earlier than the slayings.
“When one looks at his statement, it may as well have been an extract from the manifesto of the person that perpetrated these heinous crimes, this act of terrorism in Christchurch,” Rauf mentioned.
Rauf mentioned Anning was unfit for the Senate.
Opposition lawmaker Penny Wong accused Anning of making an attempt to make use of the tragedy to seize consideration forward of elections in May.
Anning solely acquired 19 votes within the final election in 2016. But due to a quirk within the Australian electoral system, he was elevated to the Senate by the anti-immigration, anti-Muslim One Nation get together after a court docket dominated that its senator, Malcolm Roberts, had not been eligible to run for election resulting from his twin citizenship.
Anning later defected from One Nation to a different anti-immigration get together, then grew to become an impartial. Analysts say Anning is unlikely to be re-elected as an impartial candidate in May.
Anning was broadly condemned for his first speech to the Senate in August advocating reviving a white-only immigration coverage and utilizing the time period “final solution” in calling for a vote on which migrants to confess into the nation. Critics accused him of creating a veiled reference to the Nazi extermination of Jews.
The authorities additionally introduced on Saturday it had banned right-wing commentator Milo Yiannopoulos from touring the nation over his social media response to the Christchurch shootings.
Immigration Minister David Coleman mentioned Yiannopoulos’ social media feedback are “appalling and foment hatred and division.”
Coleman didn’t specify which feedback he was referring to.
Yiannopoulos mentioned on Facebook that assaults like Christchurch occur as a result of “the establishment panders to and mollycoddles extremist leftism and barbaric, alien religious cultures.”
Lawmakers inside Australia’s conservative authorities had been quarreling in current weeks over whether or not the firebrand commentator needs to be allowed to tour Australia this yr.