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Greens senator Mehreen Faruqi refuses to answer question whether Hamas should “be dismantled”

**
While Senator Faruqi said she has not encouraged Senator Payman to join the Greens, she said she was “proud” of the junior senator for “standing strong on her convictions,” and accused Labor of vilifying their former colleague.



Greens senator Mehreen Faruqi refuses to answer question whether Hamas should “be dismantled”
JESSICA WANG
07/07/2024
(See translation in Arabic section)
Sydney - Middle East Times Int’l: Greens deputy leader Mehreen Faruqi has repeatedly refused to answer whether she believes “Hamas should be dismantled,” drawing an angry response from the opposition and a Jewish group.
Appearing on ABC’s Insiders for the first time, the NSW senator was asked five times whether the Islamic terrorist group responsible for the October 7 attacks needed to be either removed or disbanded.
However, she deflected her answers multiple times.
Speaking about the Israel and Palestinian conflict, at first Senator Faruqi said the presence of Hamas had “nothing to do with recognising Palestinian statehood”.
“Palestinian statehood is about Palestinians being able to self determine,” she said.
Asked by journalist David Speers whether if it would be “okay,” for Palestinians to choose Hamas,” she accused him of creating a “hypothetical scenario”.
However Speers maintained his grilling asking: “Well it’s not hypothetical to ask: Should Hamas be dismantled?”.
Refusing a yes or no answer, she said: “Hamas is listed as a terrorist organisation and there is absolutely no change that we are demanding in that”.
Asked the same question, she asked who would dismantle the group.
“It is up to the people in Palestine and that region, to make sure that people can live in peace, but I will say this again, at the moment, only some people in that region have the rights that every human deserves,” she said.
Asked one more time whether she would like to see Hamas gone, she said it wasn’t a question for her to answer.
“It’s not up to me to say who should be gone or not,” she said.
Under continued grilling, Senator Faruqi appeared to support a two-state solution, and said the self-determination of Palestinians would still allow for the Israeli state to exist.
Asked if she would “like to see Israel … continue to exist,” Senator Faruqi said: “Of course, there’s no question about that,” before doubling down on the Greens position that Palestinians were being ”denied a state” by Israel, the United States and Australia.
Senator Simon Birmingham criticised Senator Faruqi for her comments.
Picture: NewsWire/ Martin Ollman
Her comments were criticised by Opposition Senate Leader Simon Birmingham, who called on Labor to stop preferencing the Greens on election ‘how to vote’ papers.
“Australian law recognises Hamas as a terrorist organisation, which was tragically justified by their barbaric deeds on 7 October,” he said.
“By not accepting that Hamas terrorists, who advocate the destruction of Israel, should have no role in future governance of Gaza, you have to wonder what Senator Faruqi’s vision is for Israel.
“The offensiveness and extreme nature of Greens positions should see Anthony Albanese rule out future preferencing of the Greens so that Labor no longer helps to put such views in parliament.”
Senator Faruqi also came under fire for labelling the recent alleged defacement of the Korean War, Vietnam War, Australian Army monuments near the Australian War Memorial with pro-Palestinian statements as “some paint on a building”.
Executive Council of Australian Jewry co-chief executive Peter Wertheim said her comments were a “gross disrespect” to Australia’s ”ex-servicemen and women”.
“Those who sit in our parliament by virtue of that democracy should be the last people to make excuses for that kind of despicable behaviour,” he said.
Mr Wertheim also said Hamas was “indisputably a terrorist organisation,” and lashed Senator Faruqi’s comments as “ludicrous”.
“Hamas coldly and calculatedly started this latest war which has brought untold misery to tens of thousands of people on both sides of the conflict.
“Its leaders have repeatedly stated that they have no interest in or capacity for looking after the welfare of Palestinians, or making a permanent peace with Israel on any terms.”
Senator Faruqi said she was ‘proud’ of former Labor senator
 Fatima Payman’s actions this week, following her defection to
 the cross bench. Picture: NewsWire/ Martin Ollman
Conflict in the Middle East was bought to political forefront again last week, after senator Fatima Payman quit the Labor Party to sit on the cross bench over the ALP’s position on Palestine, and said she was unable to “remain silent” on the attacks on the Palestinian territory of Gaza.
While Senator Faruqi said she has not encouraged Senator Payman to join the Greens, she said she was “proud” of the junior senator for “standing strong on her convictions,” and accused Labor of vilifying their former colleague.
“It is absolutely disgraceful. That Labor has been kind of (using) unsourced whispers (and have been) kind of vilifying Senator Payman for expressing her faith,” she said.
“I mean that is ridiculous … I was in NSW parliament when the Christian Democratic Party was in the balance of power, and parties were very happy to deal with them.”

 














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