Australian prime minister Scott Morrison has cautioned Kanye West – whose legal name is ‘Ye’ – that he must be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 to enter the country. The warning comes after reports emerged about the US hip-hop star – whose vaccination status is unclear – apparently planning a concert tour Down Under in March.
In response to a journalist’s question about Ye on Saturday, Morrison said the musician would not be allowed to come if he does not “follow the rules.” The comments come weeks after Morrison’s government drew criticism over its high-profile clash with unvaccinated tennis superstar Novak Djokovic.
“The rules are you have to be fully vaccinated. They are the rules. They apply to everybody, as people have seen most recently. It doesn't matter who you are, they’re the rules,” Morrison said. “Follow the rules, you can come. You don’t follow the rules, you can’t.”
Although West has yet to announce any such tour, the question was likely prompted by a report in The Age newspaper on Friday. The report cited unnamed entertainment industry sources as confirming the 22-time Grammy Award winner had requested certain stadium venues for what would be his seventh campaign in the country. The potential tour could reportedly take place as early as mid-March.
The rapper’s representatives declined to comment on the reports or on his vaccination status. In a July 2020 interview with Forbes, Ye revealed that he had contracted Covid-19 that February, while likening vaccines to the work of the devil and claiming they would be used to implant microchips in people.
But, in November 2021, West had apparently quipped about being “half-ccinated” since he “only got one of the shots” instead of the requisite two.
Meanwhile, Australia’s Tourism Minister Dan Tehan told the Sydney Morning Herald paper that Immigration Minister Alex Hawke would examine any visa application by Ye in a “diligent manner.”