ABC won't fire Muslim presenter for expressing views on Sharia law despite petition

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The ABC says it will not sack its employee and Muslim youth activist Yassmin Abdel-Magied for expressing her opinion on its flagship political forum Q&A.

More than 10,000 people signed a petition calling for Ms Abdel-Magied to be fired from ABC News24 presenter role following her fiery clash with controversial Tasmanian senator Jacqui Lambie.

But a spokesperson for national broadcaster told News Corp Ms Abdel-Magied would not be fired for expressing her views, despite the proceeding fallout.

Appearing on Q&A last Monday, the founder of Without Borders fell into an explosive argument following Ms Lambie’s calls to deport all Muslims who support Sharia law.

The pair clashed on ABC program Four Corners over talks of a travel ban and Sharia law. Source: ABC
The pair clashed on ABC program Four Corners over talks of a travel ban and Sharia law. Source: ABC

Sharia is an Islamic legal doctrine practiced across the Muslim world that in some case endorses ruthless punishments for thieves, including amputation.

The Sudanese born Ms Abdel-Magied defended the practice of Sharia law in Australia, telling the panel that she considered Islam to be “the most feminist religion”.

She described adherence to Sharia as something akin to a personal relationship with god while its more brutal practices were a reflection of some cultures within Islam.

The petition has already received more than 10,000 signatures. Source: Change.org
The petition has already received more than 10,000 signatures. Source: Change.org

“Do you know what Sharia law is? Do you know what it is? Me praying five times a day is Sharia,” Ms Abdel-Magied asked Ms Lambie on Monday night.

“I'm not going to deny it: some countries run by Muslims are violent, sexist and do oppress their citizens.

“But again that's not down to Sharia, that's down to the culture, and the patriarchy and the politics of those particular countries.”

Prominent Muslim figures in Australia have condemned the way Ms Abdel-Magied went about her argument with Ms Lambie. Source: ABC
Prominent Muslim figures in Australia have condemned the way Ms Abdel-Magied went about her argument with Ms Lambie. Source: ABC

The public outcries to the 25-year-old’s comments were quick and succinct with an online petition that was just shy of 20,000 names.

The right-wing AltCon News group, which considers itself to be "politically incorrect" has called for Ms Abdel-Magied to be sacked as the host of the ABC's Australia Wide program.

“The Australian Broadcasting Corporation needs to reassure the tax paying public that they condemn her rhetoric and that Australians obey one set of laws,” the change.org petition stated.

“No religious law is higher than the law of the land and that her blatant lies about this law will not be tolerated or funded by the Australian tax payers.”

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