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An Australian politician who was criticised for wearing a burqa to parliament in a political stunt has claimed the UK has “no-go areas that are Muslim-dominated”.
Far-right senator Pauline Hanson was accused of mocking Islam after wearing the garment in a bid to underline her campaign to ban the burqa.
She claimed Muslim communities in the UK are causing British citizens to leave the country and move to Australia.
“You in England have got your problems in your communities,” she said.
“In your areas [that are] Muslim-dominated and you cannot go into those areas. Ask the English people.
“And I’ll tell you another thing too, a lot of the English have actually left your country, or their country – their homeland, wanting to migrate to Australia to get away from it.”
Senator Hanson rose to prominence in the nineties as the leader of the far-right One Nation party in Australia.
She has been campaigning for a complete ban on the burqa – a garment worn by some Muslim women that covers the wearer’s entire face.
On Wednesday she attended the daily question time session dressed in the garment before removing it and saying: “If a person who wears a balaclava or a helmet in to a bank or any other building, or even on the floor of the court, they must be removed.”
Her actions were condemned by Attorney-General George Brandis, who made it clear the Government had no intention of banning the burqa.
He was met with applause when he said: “I am not going to pretend to ignore the stunt that you have tried to pull today by arriving in the chamber dressed in a burqa.
“We all know that you are not adherent of the Islamic faith. I would caution and counsel you with respect to be very, very careful of the offence you may do to the religious sensibilities of other Australians.
“To ridicule that community, to drive it into a corner, to mock its religious garments, is an appalling thing to do, and I would ask you to reflect on your behaviour.”
During the Sky News interview, Senator Hanson defended the stunt, saying: “Was it provocative or actually stating what the problems may or are occurring in Australia. We have a national security risk here, we need to address it.”
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