Foreign Muslim clerics who preach hatred face deportation, Dutch minister says

Foreign Muslim clerics who preach hatred in Dutch mosques and who glorify terrorism face deportation, social affairs minister Lodewijk Asscher says in Monday’s Telegraaf.

Imams with Dutch nationality will also be stopped from preaching, Asscher told the paper.

‘If an imam from Syria wants to preach here and does not have peaceful intentions, he will not get a visa,’ Asscher said. ‘We will also make the lives difficult of Dutch imams who grew up here and spread hatred.’

It is not the first time controversial religious leaders have been refused visas. Integration minister Rita Verdonk also banned several from travelling to the Netherlands and had others deported between 2003 and 2007.

The decision tackle so-called ‘hate imams’ is part of a wider programme to counteract the radicalisation of young Dutch Muslims, Asscher said.