Fraser Anning Rebuked On-Air For 'Provocative, Divisive' Press Conference
Right-wing Senator Fraser Anning fronted media on Friday afternoon, where he was expected to address a scuffle from his earlier press conference.
Instead, the Senator used his moment in the media spotlight to call for a plebiscite on migration into Australia, repeating his hateful rhetoric about the Muslim community.
He made a number of disparaging remarks about Muslim people, including linking the entire community to terrorism.
Moments later, as Anning moved to discuss national defence, Sky News presenter Janine Perrett cut off their live-stream of his press conference on-air.
"We crossed to that because we thought he might have been going to explain what happened today," Perrett said.
Hours earlier in Sydney, a 19-year-old man became involved in a physical altercation with a photojournalist at Anning's press conference. The man has since been charged with assault.
"It was a disgusting incident and it has been condemned by political leaders," Perrett continued.
"Fraser Anning announced he was holding a press conference and you would have thought he would have had the decency to actually address that.
"Instead, as you hear there, he used that to continue more of his, um, bile."
Perrett ended the segment by saying her program would not be providing a platform for the Senator's "provocative, divisive" comments.
Anning later addressed the incident, softly condemning the violence as a "silly thing" but insisting he'd left by the time it occurred.
"Some people are crazy, I guess," Anning said, when asked to comment on why physical violence was a common theme at his conferences.
"They want to attack people if they don't agree with their views."
NSW Police earlier confirmed to 10 daily the 19-year-old man, from Randwick, is alleged to "have made intimidating comments to a female journalist", understood to be News Corp reporter Eliza Barr.
Photographer Dylan Robinson "had his equipment knocked to the ground and his shirt ripped during the alleged assault", police said.
A statement from News Corp Australia on Friday afternoon said the journalist and photographer were from the St George Shire Standard.
"The safety of our staff, and their ability to report in news events unhindered is of utmost importance to us and is a fundamental right for all journalists," the statement read.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison strongly condemned the violence, saying "this type of behaviour has no place in Australia".
"People should be able to go to work, whether you're a photographer or anyone else, and not be subjected to that sort of violence. And I find it absolutely appalling," Morrison said.
The 19-year-old man has since been charged with common assault, intimidation and behaving in an offensive manner, and is due to face local court next month.