A right-wing Australian senator, Fraser Anning, has blamed the terror attacks which claimed at least 49 lives at two mosques in Christchurch on Muslim immigrants.
In a letter on Friday, the Queensland politician, who openly opposes Muslim immigration to Australia, said: “The real cause of the bloodshed on New Zealand streets today is the immigration program which allowed Muslim fanatics to migrate to New Zealand.”
Anning said the attacks were an “example of the growing fear within our communities of the increasing Muslim presence” in Australia and New Zealand.
The Australian senator has been condemned for his “disgusting” claim, Telegraph reported.
“I am utterly opposed to any form of violence within our community, and I totally condemn the actions of the gunman,” Anning said.
“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,” he said.
Anning said Muslims had been the victims in the Christchurch attack but “usually they are the perpetrators”.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison condemned the senator’s 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,” Morrison said.
“Those views have no place in Australia, let alone the Australian Parliament,” he said.