Canberra, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison faced criticism following his “smutty” remarks about actress Pamela Anderson, after she asked him to help Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.
Anderson had urged Scott Morrison to bring Assange to Australia. Rejecting her plea, Morrison said he had “plenty of mates who have asked me if they can be my special envoy to sort out the issue with Pamela”.
Several politicians backed the actress slamming the politician saying it was high time men stopped using a woman’s sexuality and appearance to denigrate her political arguments.
A government minister defended his comment though as being “light-hearted”, the BBC reported.
Morrison has not yet responded to Anderson’s criticism.
Assange, an Australian citizen, claimed asylum in Ecuador’s London embassy in 2012 to avoid extradition to Sweden over sexual assault allegations — a case that has since been dropped.
He has remained in the embassy over fears of extradition to the US. Last week, US media reported officials were preparing charges against him.
Earlier in November, Anderson who is a former “Baywatch” star and long-time advocate for Assange, called on the Australian government to help him.
“Get Julian his passport back and take him back home to Australian and be proud of him, and throw him a parade when he gets home,” she told Australia’s 60 Minutes programme.
Morrison’s comments came soon afterwards on a radio programme. He reiterated his government’s position that it would not intervene in Assange case, the BBC said.
On Sunday, Anderson wrote in an open letter: “You trivialised and laughed about the suffering of an Australian and his family. You followed it with smutty, unnecessary comments about a woman voicing her political opinion.”
Several Australian politicians backed her criticism of Morrison’s language, even if some disputed her views on the Assange case.
Labor Senator Kristina Keneally tweeted: “It’s high time men, including @ScottMorrisonMP, stopped using a woman’s sexuality and appearance to denigrate her political arguments.”
Independent Senator Derryn Hinch added that Morrison “really should not have said it”.
Another minister, Steve Ciobo, told the media: “I suspect it was a statement that was said in a light-hearted way”.