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New Zealand mosque shooting: Australian senator blames terror attack on 'increasing Muslim presence'

The Telegraph logo The Telegraph 15/03/2019 Jonathan Pearlman
New Zealand mosque shooting: Australian senator blames terror attack on 'increasing Muslim presence'. © Getty Images New Zealand mosque shooting: Australian senator blames terror attack on 'increasing Muslim presence'.

A far-Right Australian MP has been condemned for his “disgusting” claim that New Zealand’s Muslim migrants were the cause of the terrorist attacks against mosques in Christchurch.

Fraser Anning, who is known for his incendiary rhetoric, said the attacks should not be blamed on nationalism but on New Zealand’s migration policy.

“I am utterly opposed to any form of violence within our community, and I totally condemn the actions of the gunman,” Mr Anning said.

“However, while this kind of violent vigilantism can never be justified, what it highlights is the growing fear within our community, both in Australia and New Zealand, of the increasing Muslim presence.

“As always, left-wing politicians and the media will rush to claim that the causes of today’s shootings lie with gun laws or those who hold nationalist views but this is all clichéd nonsense.

"The real cause of bloodshed on New Zealand streets today is the immigration program which allowed Muslim fanatics to migrate to New Zealand in the first place.”

Mr Anning said Muslims had been the victims in the Christchurch attack but “usually they are the perpetrators”.

Scott Morrison, Australia’s prime minister, immediately condemned the comments.

“The remarks by Senator Fraser Anning blaming the murderous attacks by a violent, right-wing, extremist terrorist in New Zealand on immigration are disgusting,” Mr Morrison said.

“Those views have no place in Australia, let alone the Australian Parliament.”

Mr Anning received just 19 direct votes in the last general election as a candidate for the anti-migrant One Nation party but became a senator after a fellow MP from the party was forced to leave Parliament.

Mr Fraser left One Nation and then joined and quit a separate right-wing party before becoming an independent. 

He has become known for his incendiary anti-migrant statements, including using a speech to call for a “final solution” to Australia’s migrant issues. 

He has called for Australia to return to its White Australia policy, which restricted non-European migrants from 1901 and was formally abolished in the early 1970s.

Pictures: New Zealand shootings: World reacts

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