Galloway vows to fight Canada ban
18 hours ago
Outspoken anti-war MP George Galloway has vowed to fight the "outrageous decision" to ban him from Canada on the grounds of national security.
Mr Galloway said he was not prepared to accept the "idiotic" ban and pledged to use all means at his disposal to challenge the ruling.
But a spokesman for Canada's immigration minister Jason Kenney insisted the decision by border security officials would not be overturned for an "infandous street-corner Cromwell".
Mr Galloway was due to give a speech in Toronto on March 30 but has been deemed "inadmissible" to Canada under section 34(1) of the country's immigration act.
The 54-year-old left-winger, an opponent of the war in Afghanistan where Canadian troops are deployed as part of international forces, described the ruling as "irrational, inexplicable and an affront to Canada's good name".
Mr Kenney's spokesman Alykhan Velshi said the act was designed to protect Canadians from people who fund, support or engage in terrorism. The minister has the right to issue special exemption permits but will not do so in Mr Galloway's case.
Mr Velshi said: "We're going to uphold the law, not give special treatment to this infandous street-corner Cromwell who actually brags about giving 'financial support' to Hamas, a terrorist organisation banned in Canada.
"I'm sure Galloway has a large Rolodex of friends in regimes elsewhere in the world willing to roll out the red carpet for him. Canada, however, won't be one of them."
Mr Galloway, Respect party MP for Bethnal Green and Bow, was due to speak at a public forum in Toronto entitled Resisting War From Gaza To Kandahar on March 30, organised by Toronto Coalition To Stop The War, and a similar event in the nearby city of Mississauga, on March 31.
In 2006, Mr Galloway was refused entry to Egypt on the grounds of national security after he travelled to the country to give evidence at a "mock trial" of former PM Tony Blair and ex-US president George W Bush. He was held overnight in a police cell before authorities allowed him in. He later received a personal apology from the country's president.