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Former Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce has been slammed by the public for comments he made about two people who died in bushfires in New South Wales.
Three people have died in total as a result of the terrifying bushfires as well as hundreds of animals and more than 170 homes have been lost.
Mr Joyce appeared on Sky News to discuss how the fires were affecting his region of New England.
There has been a lot of speculation over who is to blame for the horror start to the bushfire season, with many pointing the finger at climate change, while others claim that the Greens enforced policies that made it difficult to complete hazard reduction burns.
Mr Joyce told Sky News that more work is needed around national parks and other areas to ensure this type of bushfire behaviour won't be repeated.
He added: "I acknowledge that the two people who died were most likely people who voted for the Green party, so I am not going to start attacking them. That's the last thing I want to do," Mr Joyce said.
"What I wanted to concentrate on, is the policies that we can mitigate these tragedies happening again in the future. That's where I'm going to focus."
The politician has been slammed by people online as being uncaring and boldly cold towards the people who lost their lives.
Barnaby Joyce should resign to spend more time with his families.- Matt Burke (@matttburke) November 12, 2019
Barnaby Joyce's sick comments about the ppl who have died in the fires being greens voters were unbelievably low, even for him.- Sarah Hanson-Young:green_heart: (@sarahinthesen8) November 12, 2019
"Wow, Barnaby should be widely criticised for such callous (and factually dubious) remarks. His desperation in needing to slate the blame for the #NSWbushfires on the Greens is appalling," wrote one person.
"Does he even know their names even? What an unfeeling person Joyce is playing politics with peoples deaths in such a personal way. How disgusting!" said another.
Mr Joyce tried to claim that his comments were taken out of context.
He explained to the New Daily that he wasn't meaning to focus on the political leanings of the two people who died but wanted the focus to be on how we can encourage more hazard reduction burns.
"The people who live there are in a commune basically," he said. "Wytaliba is an alternative community. They don't vote for me, they vote for Greens, and I've got no problem with it. They agree there should have been more burn reduction, fuel reduction."
The debate about the cause of the fires will likely rage on for weeks as some communities grapple with what is left of their homes.
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