A former member of the Ku Klux Klan, a neo-Nazi, a Hamas MP and a Jewish extremist are among 16 people named today as being banned from entering the UK.
Also on the list published by the Home Office is a US “shock jock” talkshow host whose views on Islam, rape and autism have stirred controversy in America.
The 16 are among 22 people excluded in the five months to March. The Home Office has not identified the other six on security grounds.
Today's move follows changes to the law in 2005 which widened the criteria for imposing a ban to include people who promote hatred, terrorist violence or serious criminal activity.
The list includes Erich Gliebe, the leader of an American neo-Nazi group, Michael Savage (real name Michael Weiner), a radio presenter in America, Mike Guzovsky, a Jewish extremist, and Stephen “Don” Black, a former Grand Wizard in the Ku Klux Klan.
Also on the list is Fred Waldron Phelps Snr, an American Baptist pastor and his daughter, Shirley, who were barred last year for their homophobic views.
The two have picketed the funerals of Aids victims and celebrated the deaths of US soldiers as punishment for America's tolerance of homosexuality.
Also on the list of those banned between October and March is the Hamas MP Yunis al-Astal.
Artur Ryno and Pavel Skachevsky, the former leaders of a violent Russian skinhead gang which committed 20 racially motivated murders, are also banned. They are currently in jail.
The others are the preachers Wadgy Abd El Hamied Mohamed Ghoneim, Abdullah Qadri al-Ahdal, Safwat Hijazi and Amir Siddique, the Muslim activist Abdul Ali Musa (previously Clarence Reams), the Hezbollah terrorist Samir al-Quntar and Nasr Javed, leader of a Kashmiri terror group.
Inayat Bunglawala, of the Muslim Council of Britain, told BBC Radio 5 Live that people should be free to enter the country, regardless of their views.
“If they step over the line and break the law, it's at that moment the law should be enacted, not beforehand,” he said.
“If people are keeping their odious views to themselves, that's their business. We should not be in the business of policing people's minds.”
Jacqui Smith, the Home Secretary, said that granting free speech did not provide a licence to preach hatred and that those banned had overstepped the mark with the attitudes they had expressed.
She said that naming them enabled people to see the sort of unacceptable behaviour we were not willing to have in this country.
Ms Smith added: “Coming to this country is a privilege. We won't allow people into this country who are going to propagate the sort of views... that fundamentally go against our values.”
Ms Smith announced in October the tightening of rules determining who could come to the UK. A “presumption in favour of exclusion” was introduced that meant it would be up to the individual concerned to prove they would not “stir up tension” after arrival.
The full list:
Abdullah Qadri al-Ahdal
Stephen Donald Black
Wadgy Abd el-Hamied Mohamed Ghoneim
Abdul Ali Musa
Fred Waldron Phelps Snr
Michael Alan Weiner
Click to view image: 'Savage'
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