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12 Dec, 2017 18:39

Denmark adds Saudi cleric to banned ‘hate preachers’ list

Denmark adds Saudi cleric to banned ‘hate preachers’ list

The Danish Immigration Authority has added Saudi preacher Abdullah bin Radi Almoaede Al-Shammary to a ‘blacklist’ of 10 foreign clerics barred from entering the country amid allegations that these individuals promote hate speech.

The country’s Minister for Immigration, Inger Stojberg, welcomed the announcement Tuesday.

“Hate preachers have no business being in Denmark. They travel around spreading hateful messages and try to convince others to share their rapturous views,” Stojberg said, as cited by Kamikposten. 

“That’s why I’m glad to see that the Immigration Authority is doing a good job by continually discovering these hate preachers,” the minister added.

There were six people on the list, including two Saudis, one Syrian, one Canadian, and two Americans, when it was first published in May this year. With the exception of one American, Terry Jones (who burned copies of the Quran in 2011), all the preachers listed were Muslims. Several other individuals were added to the list in June and in August. 

The Danish Immigration and Integration Ministry said in a statement in May that the blacklist"sends a clear signal that travelling fanatical religious preachers who try to undermine our democracy and fundamental values of freedom and human rights are not welcome in Denmark." 

The sanctions list is part of an agreement reached in 2016 by the country’s lawmakers as part of a wider initiative against religious preachers.

The measure is designed to crack down on preachers accused of “seeking to undermine Danish values and support parallel legal interpretations,” according to the Immigration Authority's definition. An individual on the national sanctions list is forbidden from entering or residing in Denmark or in another Schengen state for at least two years.