CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — A senior Australian government minister said Wednesday that rapper Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, could be denied a visa over anti-Semitic comments if he tries to visit Australia. .
Education Minister Jason Clare was responding to media reports that the American celebrity was planning to visit the family of new Australian partner Bianca Censori in Melbourne next week.
Clare said he did not know if Ye had applied for visas, but Australia had previously refused them to people with anti-Semitic views.
“I expect that if he applies, he will have to go through the same process and answer the same questions” as others who have aired such opinions, Clare told Nine Network television.
Last month, Ye praised Hitler in an interview with conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. Twitter then suspended Ye after he tweeted a photo of a swastika merged with the Star of David.
Australian Migration Law establishes security and morality requirements for non-citizens to enter the country. Any decision on whether Ye gets an Australian visa would be made by Immigration Minister Andrew Giles, whose office said it could not comment on individual cases for confidentiality reasons.
Peter Wertheim, co-chief executive of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry, met with government officials on Tuesday to argue for an entry ban.
“We had a sympathetic audience,” Wertheim told Sky News. “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 set out our reasons in detail.”
Opposition leader Peter Dutton said if he was in government he would be inclined to ban Ye on character grounds.
“My inclination would be not to let him in,” Dutton told Melbourne’s Radio 3AW on Tuesday.
“His anti-Semitic comments are disgraceful, his conduct and behavior are appalling, and he is not a person of good character,” Dutton added.
Ye and Censori plan to visit his family who live in Melbourne’s northeast suburb of Ivanhoe next week, Seven Network News reported.
Ye and Censori recently tied the knot less than two months after finalizing his divorce from Kim Kardashian, entertainment news website TMZ reported two weeks ago.
The AP asked Ye’s rep if he married Censori and planned to go to Melbourne, but did not get an immediate response.
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