According to a minister, Kanye West cannot be banned from entering Australia because of his history of anti-Semitic remarks.
It is clear that the rapper – who is now called Ye – was planning to visit the country to meet the family of his partner Bianca Censori, who grew up in Melbourne.
Education Minister Jason Clare condemned Ye’s “terrible” anti-Semitic comments about Hitler and the Holocaust, saying others who had made similar statements had been denied visas.
“People like that who have applied for a visa to enter Australia have been rejected in the past,” Clare said in an interview on Channel Nine. “I expect that if he signs up, he’ll have to go through the same process and answer the same questions as them.”
Ye has had one in recent months series of anti-Semitic remarks – including praising Hitler, tweeting a picture of a swastika and denying the Holocaust.
Opposition leader Peter Dutton, an immigration minister under a previous government, said on Tuesday he would be inclined to ban Ye, but that it was a government decision.
“His anti-Semitic remarks are outrageous, his behavior and his behavior are abhorrent,” he told 3AW radio.
“He is not a person of good character and the minister has the ability to prevent someone of bad character from entering our country.”
Peter Wertheim, co-chief executive officer of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry, met with officials on Tuesday to advocate for a ban on the musician.
“We had a sympathetic hearing,” Wertheim said.
“We have argued that this particular individual does not meet the character test and that it would be in the national interest not to grant him a visa and we have detailed our reasons in that letter.”