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Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull dines with hate preacher

James Campbell and Rob Harris

Herald Sun

An Islamic preacher — who once called AIDS a divine punishment for gays and for God to “prepare us for jihad”- dined with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull at Kirribilli House last night.

Sheik Shady Al-Suleiman, the national president of the Australian National Imams Council, has said in online videos that females will be “hung by the breasts in hell” and that women should not even look at men

He was among a group of religious leaders and prominent Islamic Australians hosted by the PM at an Iftar dinner to mark the holy month of Ramadan at Kirribilli House.

The Australian-born Sheik Shady has previously called on God to help “destroy the enemies of Islam” and for adulterers to be stoned to death.

Among the guests at the dinner included Gold Logie winner Waleed Aly and wife Susan Carland, head of the Australian Multicultural Foundation Hass Dellal, Archbishop of Sydney, Reverend Glenn Davies and Richmond footballer Bachar Houli.

In online videos Shiek Shady has called for the killing of women who engage in premarital sex: “Remember that if there is an Islamic state the punishment of zina [sex outside marriage], the punishment of those who commit zina, if they have never been married before, they will be lashed 100 lashes,” he says.

“If they are married while they committed zina, or previously been married and divorced, and they committed zina, then their punishment is stoning to death.”

Mr Turnbull told the gathering of about 60 people, the first of its kind hosted by a Prime Minister, to unite against extremism.

“The aim of extremists including those committing violence through a warped and nihilist interpretation of religion is to divide us and to turn our citizens against each other — but we will not let them win,” Mr Turnbull said.

“Acts of terror like Sunday’s massacre in Orlando are perpetrated to divide us along lines of race, religion, sect and sexuality — but that kind of hatred and division must not prevail.

“We must stand together like we do tonight as one Australian family united against terrorism, racism, discrimination and violence.”

Mr Turnbull’s office last night confirmed that Sheik Shady was invited to the dinner as the president of the ANIC.
“Views like this are wrong, unacceptable and I condemn them,” Mr Turnbull said in a statement to the Herald Sun last night

“Mutual respect is the key to the success of our diverse, tolerant, multicultural society.”

Labor leader Bill Shorten declined an invitation to the dinner.

Victorian Labor MP Michael Danby said: “After Orlando, in particular, Malcolm Turnbull ought to have had the sense to slam the door in the face of this despicable hate-preacher.

“It is now clearly established that hateful words directly lead to Orlando-style horror,” he said
“The standard you invite to dinner is the standard you accept.”

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