Apr 27 2015
Australian radio host under fire for allegedly calling a terrorist-looking Muslim football player a “terrorist”
Maybe it was a freudian slip? Radio host denies calling AFL’s first Muslim player a ‘terrorist’ at a function.
UK Daily Mail Melbourne radio broadcaster John Burns has been revealed as the media personality alleged to have vilified Richmond’s Bachar Houli. Burns, who hosts 3AW morning show Ross and John with Ross Stevenson, is alleged to have referred to Houli as a ‘terrorist’ at a club function at the MCG on Friday night during the Tigers’ match against Melbourne.
The radio station confirmed a complaint has been made against Mr Burns and said he doesn’t recall making the comment, and is ‘mortified’ by the allegation. John Burns said a friend sitting with him at the time also didn’t recall the comment being made.
Mr Burns spoke to 3AW’s Tom Elliott on Monday afternoon and said that while he didn’t recall making such a comment, he apologised unreservedly if any offence had been caused. ‘The game was underway and the person in front of me turned around and said ‘what did you say’?’ Mr Burns said on the radio show. ‘I wasn’t aware of having said anything really and I don’t recall what I said but he alleged that I made a comment that was offensive.
When quizzed by Tom Elliot on how much liquor he had consumed during the game, Mr Burns said he had enjoyed himself but alcohol did not contribute to the events. He said he couldn’t even begin to imagine what words of his might have been misconstrued but went on to tell Tom Elliot that he ‘didn’t say anything like accidental tourists, I wouldn’t think’.
‘I can’t recall saying anything that I intended to be offensive to anybody on the other side of the game.’ Mr Elliot told Mr Burns that he has heard the term ‘terrorist’ and ‘jihadist’ being used to describe Bachar Houli on numerous occasions at matches, however Mr Burns said he has never witnessed this.