News

Ipswich candidate in call to "eradicate mosques"

POLICY: Rise Up Australia Party candidate for Blair Anthony Mackin.
POLICY: Rise Up Australia Party candidate for Blair Anthony Mackin.

IPSWICH Muslims have defended their faith in the wake of Rise Up Australia Party candidate Anthony Mackin's calls to eradicate mosques and ban the burka.

Mr Mackin, a bible teacher, is the Blair candidate for a party that has banning the burka as one of its key policies.

In an interview with The QT yesterday, Mr Mackin explained why he was opposed to burkas.

"Part of the problem is the obvious one, that you can't identify who is underneath it," he said.

"I've seen recently on the internet that there have been suicide bombers disguising themselves in burkas.

"When we go into a petrol station the first thing a motorcyclist is asked to do is remove the helmet before the cashier will receive payment for the bill, for security purposes.

"Everybody is required to do this...but the people who are not assimilating to our laws and customs are not."

But Ipswich Muslim David Palmer has hit back and asked Mr Mackin if the party was also aiming to ban costume outfits.

"There is no law in Australia that says you can't wear Batman and Superman outfits," Mr Palmer said.

"You can't see who is underneath those either. So does he want to ban Superman outfits as well?"

Mr Palmer and his wife Norma have run Brassall Village Takeaway for 20 years and are respected members of the community who worship at the Ipswich Mosque in Brassall. Mrs Palmer does not wear the burka, but she does wear a headscarf.

"I was born a Muslim and I want to follow my religion," she said. "My religion says that as a woman you should cover yourself and I am happy to do it...from my learning, the two things you can expose are your face and your hands. I feel a lot more safe and comfortable walking around, because I feel more modest than other people. But we are not forced to wear a burka."

Mr Mackin said his major concern was that burkas "mostly come from the Islamic religion that is aggressively non conformist".

"If they were willing to conform and obey Australian customs and laws there wouldn't be quite as big a problem. The ladies are covered for a particular reason, and that is to subjugate them." Mrs Palmer pointed out nuns also wear head coverings and said Mr Mackin should look closer to home before criticising Islam. She drew attention to the cases of Christian ministers and priests convicted of molesting children.

"That is not something you hear our Imams doing," she said.

On mosques, Mr Mackin said "if Islam determines or decrees that it needs a mosque, then Islam has to go and the mosques have to go".

"We've been told mosques are seen as militant infrastructure by the Muslims."

The QT asked Mr Mackin if he favoured the eradication of mosques or stopping them in the future.

"Personally, I lean towards the eradication of mosques," he said. "In order to establish a mosque we find that Muslims tend to flood an area and make it uncomfortable for locals."

But Mrs Palmer said Ipswich Mosque was a place of peace, not unrest.

"Ipswich Mosque has been built for around five years, and since then we have seen many wonderful people there," she said.

"We have formed a very good community and we help each other out. We sit down, but not to talk about terrorism. We sit down to pray and teach our kids to do the right thing. So I think this chap should go and mix around a bit more before he comes up with these accusations."

Mr Palmer said Mr Mackin's views were not reflective of the wider community.

"Australia is one of the most peaceful, multinational and multicultural countries that there is and it is because people like (Mr Mackin) don't get a foot in the door," he said.

*Mr Mackin will be at tonight's QT debate with Blair candidates at the Ipswich Turf Club. The debate starts at 7pm and members of the public are invited to attend. You can also follow the debate online which will be webcast on the QT website.

Topics:  federal election 2013, rise up australia party


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Mounted archery to hit targets

READY, AIM, FIRE: Hayley Larrykin riding bareback bridleless archery.

Mounted archery on the rise.

All new heights in Colombia

PEDAL POWER: Narelle Falkenhagen travelled to Medellin, Colombia, in late May to compete in the 2016 UCI BMX World Championships. Photo: Ricardo Salazar

Narelle Falkenhagen competed in her third UCI BMX world championship

Police provide helping hand at Lockyer District High School

TOP COP: Lockyer District High School students Haidyn Thode and Kaitlyn Friend with Senior Constable Carlene Groube and principal Darren Cook.

Lockyer District High School welcome their new police officer.

Latest deals and offers

Where to vote for Wright and Blair divisions

Where to vote in the Wright and Blair divisions.

Mounted archery to hit targets

READY, AIM, FIRE: Hayley Larrykin riding bareback bridleless archery.

Mounted archery on the rise.

All new heights in Colombia

PEDAL POWER: Narelle Falkenhagen travelled to Medellin, Colombia, in late May to compete in the 2016 UCI BMX World Championships. Photo: Ricardo Salazar

Narelle Falkenhagen competed in her third UCI BMX world championship

Police provide helping hand at Lockyer District High School

TOP COP: Lockyer District High School students Haidyn Thode and Kaitlyn Friend with Senior Constable Carlene Groube and principal Darren Cook.

Lockyer District High School welcome their new police officer.

Katie’s closer to her Ekka dream role

DREAM: Lowood Show Girl Katie Whitfield.

Katie Whitfield named Lowood Show Girl.

Caitlyn Shadbolt, Sara Storer join Gympie Muster bill

Caitlyn Shadbolt performs at CMC Rocks in March 2016.

AWARD-winning singers star in third line-up announcement.

Clive Palmer to re-open refinery

Clive Palmer on ABC radio.

Clive Palmer talks about his achievements, election chances and re-opening the...

Dash Cam of Slip in Snow

Even light snow can be hazardous.

Dash cam shows how easy it is to lose control in even light snow.

Chaos outside Istanbul Airport

Turkish police block the road after an suicide bomb attack at Ataturk Airport in Istanbul, Turkey, 28 June 2016. At least 10 people were killed in two separate explosions that hit Ataturk Airport.

Distress as cars escape Istanbul airport after bombing.

Burnett Heads housing development approved

COUNCIL APPROVED: A Burnett Heads housing development has been approved by Bundaberg Regional Council. Photo Contributed

Councillors approved the development seven votes to four

Three bedroom, 1100sqm block: Is this Qld's cheapest home?

BARGAIN BUY: Is this North Bundaberg property the cheapest home in Queensland?

Becoming a real estate mogul is all about risk and reward