The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) has called on the Home Office to stop an evangelical preacher from the US coming to the UK.
Franklin Graham, the son of the evangelist Billy Graham, is linked to Donald Trump and has a history of making Islamophobic and homophobic statements.
Graham, who described Islam as “evil” and “wicked” and said LGBT rights and same-sex marriage were the work of the devil, has been invited to speak at a Christian festival in Blackpool.
In response to Graham’s invitation, three MPs, including a Tory government whip and the MCB have come together to urge the Home Office to deny his entry to the UK.
“In the past the government has banned individuals whom they claim are ‘not conducive to the public good’. Graham’s remarks are on record and clearly demonstrate a hatred for Muslims and other minorities,” the MCB said in a statement.
“We would expect the government to apply its criteria here. If it does not, it will send a clear message that it is not consistent in challenging all forms of bigotry.”
Paul Maynard MP, who is a government whip, Afzal Khan MP and Gordon Marsden have all backed the calls.
“It’s perfectly possible for the government not to admit someone whose presence is not conducive to the public good,” Mr Marsden told The Guardian.
“Graham’s visit to Blackpool is likely to cause considerable offence.”