Advocates have urged an international preacher due to speak in Sydney to debate marriage equality in a way that does not demean same-sex couples or misrepresent Australian Muslims as anti-gay.

Hong Kong-based Islamic preacher, Brother Wael Ibrahim, who is due to speak at a conference in Sydney, has reportedly compared same-sex marriages to people marrying reptiles, stray dogs and computers.

Australian Marriage Equality national director, Rodney Croome, said,

“Overwhelmingly, Australians want the marriage equality to be conducted in a respectful, mature and non-hateful way.”

“I urge Mr Ibrahim to respect Australian community standards by debating marriage equality in a way that is not demeaning to same-sex partners and their families.”

“I also urge him to respect the fact that many Australian Muslims support marriage equality and do not want to be stereotyped as anti-gay.”

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Australian Marriage Equality national director, Rodney Croome