Sunday, December 11, 2005

Howard condemns violence.

Australia: In an astonishing but predictable move, it seems the media wants to blame Australians and anti-terrorism actions.

ATTACKING people on the basis of their race is totally unacceptable, Prime Minister John Howard said today. But Mr Howard refused to call Australians racist following the mob violence in Sydney yesterday. He condemned incidents in which up to 5000 people descended on North Cronulla Beach, chanting racist slogans and attacking people of Middle Eastern appearance. The violence sparked apparent reprisal attacks late last night, with cars damaged at Maroubra Beach. "Mob violence is always sickening," Mr Howard said. "Attacking people on the basis of their race, their appearance, their ethnicity, is totally unacceptable and should be repudiated by all Australians irrespective of their own background and their politics," he said. "I believe yesterday's behaviour was completely unacceptable but I'm not going to put a general tag (of) racism on the Australian community. "I think it's a term that is flung around sometimes carelessly and I'm simply not going to do so." Mr Howard also dismissed any suggestion his government's warnings about home-grown terrorists had fuelled the rampage. "It is impossible to know how individuals react but everything this government's said about home-grown terrorism has been totally justified," Mr Howard said. "It is a potential threat. To suggest that one should remain silent ... knowing what I know because that might antagonise someone else is a complete failure of leadership."
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