3AW Radio host Neil Mitchell says he stands by claims anti-lockdown protesters urinated on Melbourne's Shrine of Rememberance during a protest in 2021.
Mitchell branded protesters as "bozos" before repeating unverified claims made by Shrine CEO Dean Lee about protesters desecrating the sacred war memorial, with comments that enraged the public and altered public opinion about the protesters.
In a heated exchange, Rebel News reported, challenged the veteran newscaster's acceptance a single source, which was aplified in the mainstream media's portrayal of protesters, who demonstrated against the Victorian government's authoritarian response to the pandemic lockdowns.
Yemini, who was on the ground covering the protests, asserted that the majority of the demonstrators were not accurately represented by these labels or actions.
Mitchell briefly defended his stance before changing the topic of conversation to other protests where a few protesters had jumped on cars and stormed union offices.
Yemini responded by providing a detailed account of the events and calling out the lack of proper questioning from the media. He explained how the narrative was shaped by selective reporting and unverified claims, such as John Setka's comments on 3AW calling the protesters "Nazis."
Despite Mitchell's insistence that not all media had used this term, Yemini emphasised that the mainstream media's failure to give fair representation to the protesters had distorted the truth and eroded trust.
He pointed out that many of the protesters were ethnically diverse, and the actions of a few troublemakers should not define the entire group.
Yemini pointed out the media's unwillingness to speak to the protesters and learn their perspective.
Protesters on the day stated that the only instances of desecration at the shrine were committed by police horses, and the majority of the protesters were acting and respect and good faith.