British conspiracy theorist David Icke has been barred from entering the Netherlands as a “risk to public order”, reported RTL Nieuws. He was scheduled to be the keynote speaker at a controversial rally this weekend in Amsterdam.
Dutch immigration service IND consulted on the matter with the police and the National Coordinator for Security and Counterterrorism (NCTV), sources told the news outlet. IND then advised the Cabinet to block Icke from crossing the border into the Netherlands.
State Secretary Eric van der Burg accepted IND’s advice to ban Icke from entering the Netherlands for posing a threat to public order, the sources said.
Samen voor Nederland, an organization that grew in popularity for opposing all coronavirus rules in the Netherlands, announced last month that Icke would speak at their rally in Amsterdam’s Dam Square. The organization has been involved in other protests, movements and rallies, including farmers demonstrations.
The Center Information and Documentation on Israel, an advocacy group for Jewish people and Israel, said Icke should be blocked from entering the Netherlands, calling him a, “conspiracy theorist, anti-Semite, and Holocaust denier.” The group noted the importance of Dam Square in their statement. “The place where our National Monument stands as a symbol of our freedom,” the organization said. “CIDI believes this man should not be given a podium in our country and certainly not there.”
When Amsterdam’s leadership learned that Icke was slated to speak, it called on IND to investigate whether Icke should be prevented from entering the country. The mayor, district police chief, and local head of the prosecution service also asked Samen voor Nederland to at least move the demonstration away from the monument, which memorializes those who died during World War II.
Icke is known for promoting a theory claiming that humanity is ruled by a cabal of shape-shifting reptiles appearing as humans. While many denounce the theory as crazy, the theory has been linked to anti-Semitism and metaphors about Jewish people. Icke’s reptilian conspiracy theory has also been referenced repeatedly recently by Thierry Baudet, the leader of the far-right political party Forum voor Democratie.
Samen voor Nederland refused to move their rally, saying they carried out their own investigation and determined Icke was not an anti-Semite. However on Thursday, the city announced that the organization’s rally must move from Dam Square to Museumplein, where there is more space.
According to RTL Nieuws, the rally will remain at Museumplein and will not be moved back just because Icke will not be present.