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RSL criticized protesters in Melbourne for “misusing” the Australian flag and the Red Ensign during their marches.
RSL Australia President Greg Melick said the protesters’ display of the national flag and the Red Ensign, as well as their occupation of the Melbourne Shrine of Remembrance yesterday, showed “a flagrant disrespect”.
The Red Ensign is piloted at sea by merchant vessels registered in Australia.
“These are not protest flags and flying them during the unruly and lawless protests in Melbourne is unauthorized and yet another deplorable act of an irresponsible and shameful crowd,” said Mr Melick.
“The disrespect of these people apparently knows no bounds. They dishonor the Australian military who made the ultimate sacrifice for our nation, and they dishonor our national flags.
“Their actions to promote their own cause and selfish ambitions are reprehensible, especially at a time when all Australians should come together to face the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Our veterans fought for the right of Australians to express themselves freely, but they did not fight to allow these people to desecrate our memorials and national flags.”
Mr Melick said any misuse of the flags should result in the prosecution of offenders.