September 22, 2018

Sam Dastyari hits back at Patriot Blue thugs

10 November 2017, 01:43 | Austin Hogan

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The group, an offshoot of far-right nationalist group United Patriots Front, established its Facebook page only a few months ago, sharing videos of stunts such as the one targeting Senator Dastyari in a Melbourne pub, and is amassing a growing following.

Patriot Blue founder Neil Erikson, who filmed the confrontation, is heard telling the senator, "why don't you go back to Iran, you terrorist?".

Instead, she blamed Dastyari and called him "a little Mr Bean" and "a smartarse", The Guardian reports.

Labor Senator Sam Dastyari has been taunted by far-right supporters in a Melbourne pub.

He blamed US President Donald Trump and Australian populist Pauline Hanson for enabling and empowering "white nationalists".

"I think he's playing the victim a little bit".

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said there was no place for racial vilification in Australia.

"We are the most successful multicultural society in the world and that is because it's built, our society is built, on a foundation of mutual respect and so we should have zero tolerance for racism and racial, racist abuse like that", he said.

"What is this country coming to when you can not go out for a meal without being abused by racist idiots", he told Seven on Thursday.

Labor leader Bill Shorten echoed Turnbull's sentiment, saying he was "disgusted" by the behaviour of the men, and despite it Dastyari remains in "good spirits".

You'd have to say, Dastyari has handled it well.

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One Nation rejected Senator Dastyari's portrayal of the incident.

"Everywhere I go, I get white nationalists following me".

Senator Hanson's chief of staff James Ashby told AAP: "Sam Dastyari gets heckled because he's a wanker. and not because he's a Muslim".

He admitted that it makes him feel small, disgusting and "feel kind of bad and that's what they are created to do".

In 2014 Mr Eriksen avoided jail time after pleading guilty to stalking a Melbourne Rabbi after making a number of racially-motivated phone calls.

In 2015, he took part in a mock beheading outside Bendigo Council to protest against a planned mosque in the western Victorian city.

Mr Erikson on Thursday defended his stunt and called Senator Dastyari a "sook" for complaining about the harassment.

A woman sitting at the Senator's table interrupts at one point to ask if the men, one of whom is wearing a high-visibility work shirt, are employed by transport company TOLL.

In Wednesday-night's incident the group also questioned Senator Dastyari over the Chinese donations scandal which cost him his spot on Labor's frontbench.

"If he wants to go for Toll and try and hurt me financially he can go for it", he said.

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