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Controversial US preacher becomes first person banned from entering Ireland under exclusion powers

Extra.ie logo Extra.ie 13/05/2019 Thomas Telford
© Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

An American preacher with extreme anti-semitic and anti-gay views has become the first person to be banned from entering Ireland under 1999 exclusion powers.

Steven L Anderson, a preacher based in Arizona, came to public prominence in 2009 when he told his congregation how he prayed for the death of President Barack Obama.

Anderson and his church are also infamous for their anti-semitic views including denial of the Holocaust.

a man in a blue shirt © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland Anderson posted on his website how he was set to visit Dublin on May 26 but did not specify a location or time.

An online petition calling for Anderson to be banned from entering the country has so far garnered over 14,000 signatures.

Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan signed the exclusion order on Sunday which comes into effect immediately under the Immigration Act 1999.

a man in a blue shirt © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland Under Section 4 of the Act, the Minister can sign an exclusion order if ‘it is necessary in the interest of public security or public policy.’

‘I have signed the exclusion order under my executive powers in the interests of public policy,’ Flanagan confirmed.

Anderson had been invited to preach in the Republic of Ireland by Northern Irish Baptist preacher Stuart Houston.

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