Australian PM stands by call on Muslims to integrate

John Howard says he has no need to apologise for telling Muslims they need to embrace Australian values. Mr Howard sparked controversy yesterday after singling out Muslim migrants for refusing to embrace Australian values and urged them to fully integrate by treating women as equals and learning to speak English.

The call for a shift in attitude among some Muslims infuriated community leaders and comes as The Australian revealed the Prime Minister’s own Islamic advisers have already accused Mr Howard and senior ministers of fuelling hatred and mistrust by using “inflammatory and derogatory” language.

But Mr Howard today stood by his comments. “I don’t apologise,” he told reporters.

The Australian, 1 September 2006

Howard’s colleague Peter Costello is also sticking by his view that Muslims who put Islamic law above Australian law are not welcome in Australia.