Minister for Women Michaelia Cash has accused a controversial Islamic group of encouraging violence against women.
The Women of Hizb ut-Tahrir Australia group has published a video on social media saying Islam allows men to hit women in a "symbolic" way.
Two panellists in the video claim men are permitted — but not obliged or encouraged — to hit women.
"It's very evident that this is symbolic in nature and it's not as what people have understood or what people would like to have understood," one panellist said.
In a statement, Senator Cash said domestic violence was abuse "plain and simple".
"These attitudes have no place in modern Australia," she said.
"Attempts to teach the next generation of young Australian Muslims that violence from a husband to a wife is acceptable is completely out of touch with community standards and should be condemned in the strongest possible terms."
Senator Cash said one woman was murdered each week in Australia by a partner or former partner, while one in three Australian women had experienced physical violence since age 15.
"There is one law that applies to all Australians," Senator Cash said.
"The Turnbull Government will not tolerate lesser standards being applied to certain communities of Australian women.
"Offensive attitudes like those in the video run counter to what we are trying to teach young Australians. I condemn them in the strongest possible terms."
The panellists say men are permitted to hit women, but only gently and preferably with a scarf, pieces of fabric or a short stick.
One panellist refers to being hit by a man as "a beautiful blessing" while another says it is "symbolic".
When listing acts that "require disciplinary measures", the women raised disobedience to a husband, immoral acts, cheating, or having guests that the husband does not approve of.
Labor's Tanya Plibersek said violence was "always a crime".
Australia's first Muslim frontbencher, Labor's Ed Husic, said the video was unacceptable and Senator Cash was right to describe it as abhorrent.
"It is not acceptable in any form to strike anyone, either between husband or wife or anywhere," he said.
Independent senator Cory Bernardi said he was appalled by the video and was glad to see it had been condemned by all sides of politics.
"I think it is disgraceful that anyone thinks it is acceptable [for] domestic violence in any way, shape or form to take place in Australia," he told ABC News.
In a statement posted on their Facebook page on Thursday evening, the Women of Hizb ut-Tahrir Australia said domestic violence was "an abomination that Islam rejects in the strongest terms", and accused politicians and the media of taking the "moral high ground while throwing stones from glass houses".
"For them, this is just another opportunity, just another day of the week, in which to attack Islam and Muslims as they do every other day.
"We firmly refuse them their demand of interrogating Islam for they are in no position to lecture anyone on women or violence."
However, the group said they recognised there was "a need to be sensitive to the environment in which we operate and the context in which we are speaking".
The group said they wanted to "acknowledge the very understandable concern expressed from sections of our Muslim community" regarding the post.
"Indeed, we express our gratitude for the sincere advice we have received and continue to receive from members of the community. Sincere criticism from the community one serves is a blessing," the statement said.
"We firmly believe that we, as a community, must not shy away from the clarification of Islamic injunctions, however controversial, let alone succumb to reinterpretations of Islam forced by liberal hounding.
"In fact, the greater the pressure, the greater our adherence to Islam must be."
Newly installed NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller told ABC News the video was "disturbing".
"The law does not distinguish between race or religion when it comes to violence against women — it is not acceptable in any shape or form," he said.
"At a time when police are determined to break the cycle of domestic violence, it is disturbing to think there are people that will condone it."
Mr Fuller said men needed to "take responsibility and not receive encouragement to behave violently".
"I need to appeal to anyone who is aware of domestic violence in any home to report it to police and we will intervene to save lives," he said.
"Stop the violence and criminally charge people who break the law."
Hizb ut-Tahrir has been banned in a number of countries and there have been calls for the group to be banned in Australia.
Posted by Women Against Shariah on Friday, April 14, 2017