(photo credit: Tovah Lazaroff)
The UK's Home Office has banned Likud central committee member Moshe Feiglin from entering Britain.
A letter sent to Feiglin from the office of Home Secretary Jacqui Smith, and published in this week's Jewish Chronicle, says the minister has excluded him from the country, even though he had no plans to visit.
"I am writing to advise you that following the London bombings in July 2005, the home secretary announced a list of particular activities that would normally lead to a person being excluded or deported from the UK on the grounds that their presence in the country is not conducive to the public good," the letter reads.
The unacceptable activities listed in the two-page letter include "writing, producing, publishing or distributing material; public speaking including preaching; running a Web site and using a position of responsibility" to "foment or justify terrorist violence in furtherance of particular beliefs; seek to provoke others to terrorist acts; foment other serious criminal activity or seek to provoke others to serious criminal acts and foster hatred which might lead to inter-community violence in the UK."
The home secretary concluded that Feiglin should be "excluded" from the UK on the grounds that his presence "would not be conducive to the public good."
According to the Jewish Chronicle, the Home Office would not elaborate on why or how the decision was made. The letter did, however, cite a number of extracts from Feiglin's articles.
In an extract from an article posted on the Arutz Sheva Web site, Feiglin is quoted as saying: "In order to declare that we are right, we have to declare war. It's not the Arabs who are murdering mothers, but those merciful people who gave weapons to the murderers. It's not the Arabs who are burning babies, but the peaceniks who recognized the justice of the Arabs' cause. It's not the cruel people who are bombing us, but the merciful people who showed them mercy. War now! A holy war now."
In another extract, on the Israel Science and Technology homepage, Feiglin is quoted as saying: "The basis of Islam is not the quality of mercy, but of justice. If Christianity bridges the gap between sin and morals by automatic benevolence and absolution (that over long periods were sold by clergy), Islam does this in a far simpler way. It abolishes both benevolence and morals - their holy Muhammad is strong, cruel and deceitful."
These comments brought the leader of the Likud's dissident Jewish Leadership faction "within the scope of the list of unacceptable behaviors," the letter read.
"It is considered that you are seeking to provoke others to serious criminal acts and fostering hatred which might lead to inter-community violence in the UK," the letter added.
There is no right to appeal the ban, but such decisions are reviewed every three years.
Feiglin told the Jewish Chronicle: "This is all very strange, because I have no plans to visit Britain either in the short or the long term. I have never been banned from anywhere else, in fact I am giving a lecture in Canada at the end of this month."
Earlier this month, British authorities granted permission to Ibrahim Mousawi, chief foreign new editor for Hizbullah's Al-Manar television station in Lebanon, to enter the UK to participate in a number of political events.
Accused of anti-Semitism and incitement, and recently banned from entering Ireland, his television station aired a 29-part "documentary" in 2004 in which it depicted stereotypical Jews hatching a plot for Jewish world control and domination.
Following the 9/11 attacks, Al-Manar alleged that 4,000 Jewish employees did not turn up to work at the World Trade Center that day and that the attack was masterminded by Israel.
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