SkyNews Australia has admitted it was wrong to broadcast an interview with far-right nationalist Blair Cottrell and has removed the footage from its platforms.
The interview conducted on Sunday evening by Sky host and former Northern Territory Country Liberal Party chief minister Adam Giles sparked outrage on social media.
It was also criticised by two high-profile Sky hosts, David Speers and Laura Jayes, as well as commentator and former Queensland Labor MP Craig Emerson, who quit the broadcaster on Monday.
"It was wrong to have Blair Cottrell on Sky News Australia," SkyNews news director Greg Byrnes tweeted late on Sunday night after the interview went to air after 6pm.
"His views do not reflect ours. The interview has been removed from repeat timeslots and online platforms."
Sky news presenter Jayes branded Cottrell "just an a***hole" while political editor David Speers tweeted he "100%" agreed with Jayes.
Dr Emerson, whose father was interred in a German prisoner of war camp in WWII, accused the broadcaster of "normalising racism and bigotry" in Australia and said he had quit.
He accused Mr Giles and his producer of knowing who Cottrell was and said he was invited on to the program "for that reason".
"The decision to allow neo-Nazi Blair Cottrell onto the channel was another step in a journey to normalising racism & bigotry in our country," he tweeted.
Cottrell, who sparked controversy by suggesting a picture of Adolf Hitler be hung in every Australian classroom, attacked the decision "pathetic" and accused Sky of "caving in" to "Leftist abuse".
During the interview, the former United Patriots Front leader called for immigration cutbacks and warned against "foreign ideologies" in Australia.
Cottrell, a self-employed Melbourne builder, also said he believed Australians lacked national pride.
Cottrell was convicted last year of inciting contempt and ridicule of Muslims. He also has convictions for other matters, including arson.
He is due to appear in the High Court later this year to appeal the 2017 conviction and has sought public help to finance his case.
Federal Labor MP Tim Watts questioned why Cottrell was described by Sky as an "activist", tweeting: "Why is a man who has said he wants to see a portrait of Adolf Hitler hung in Australian classrooms and for copies of Mein Kampf to be 'issued annually' to students being given a platform?".
Race Discrimination Commissioner Tim Soutphommasane said the interview was a "shameful low".
"We've come not to expect much from the nocturnal programming at @SkyNewsAust -- but featuring a neo-Nazi with a history of crime and violence is a shameful low. It also highlights how extremists are being dangerously accommodated by sections of the Australian media," he tweeted.
NSW Greens upper house MP David Shoebridge said he would decline to be interviewed on Sky until it gave a "full apology".
"I hope my Greens colleagues, and all MPs who care about decency, will join me," he tweeted on Sunday.
Australian Associated Press