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Minister reminds that hate speech illegal

22 November 2016

Ethnic Communities Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga says hate speech is prohibited in New Zealand.

Mr Lotu-Iiga has condemned anti-Semitic speeches by the secretary of the Federation of Islamic Associations of New Zealand and Muslim cleric Shaykh Mohammad Anwar Sahib.

He says attacks of the kind made by Dr Sahib are offensive and insulting and are way out of step with New Zealand's egalitarian values.

“The New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990 gives everyone the right to freedom of expression, including the right to seek, receive and impart information and opinions of any kind in any form. But hate speech is prohibited under section 61 of the Human Rights Act.

“New Zealand is one of the most ethnically diverse countries in the world. We have people from more than 200 ethnicities living here and more than 160 different languages are spoken in New Zealand.

“It disgusts me that anti-Semitic views are being recorded and posted online. It harms New Zealanders reputation as a tolerant and welcoming people. It also concerns me that New Zealanders could be influenced by this,” Mr Lotu-Iiga says.

Last updated on the 16th September 2019