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Pauline Hanson racism lawsuit reopened to attack Muslim denial

Senators Mehreen Faruqi and Pauline Hanson are facing off in court over an allegation of racism.

Senators Mehreen Faruqi and Pauline Hanson are facing off in court over an allegation of racism. Photo: AAP

Claims Pauline Hanson did not know a Greens senator was a Muslim when she told her to pack her bags and go back to Pakistan will be tested in court.

Senator Mehreen Faruqi is suing the One Nation leader in the Federal Court over alleged racial discrimination through a September 2022 tweet telling her to “piss off back to Pakistan”.

The alleged hate speech responded to a post by Senator Faruqi on the day Queen Elizabeth II passed away.

The Greens deputy leader wrote that she could not mourn the passing of the leader of a “racist empire built on stolen lives, land and wealth of colonised peoples”.

The matter has gone through a four-day trial before Justice Angus Stewart who adjourned to consider his findings.

But Senator Faruqi applied at the eleventh hour to reopen the case.

In that application, she put forwards 249 pages of material showing she had publicly identified as Muslim on numerous occasions, including in communications with the One Nation head.

This includes a pinned tweet in which Senator Faruqi says “I’m Muslim”, and a podcast episode of Paul Murray Live on which Senator Hanson appeared as a guest, where the host also identifies her as Muslim.

Senator Faruqi also tagged Senator Hanson in a 2018 tweet asking, “I’m curious. @PaulineHansonOz am I a good Muslim or a bad one?”, according to the evidence.

On Monday, Justice Stewart allowed the case to be reopened, adding this to the mountain of material he has to consider.

The parties have been ordered to write submissions to assist the judge.

Senator Hanson has denied she engaged in racial discrimination by sending the tweet.

Instead, she claims she engaged in political discourse by pointing out hypocrisy by the Greens deputy in criticising the monarchy while benefiting from immigrating to and living in Australia.

Justice Stewart will hand down his findings at a later date.

-AAP

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