American anti-choice campaigner Troy Newman, who was due to address Right To Life conferences around Australia and whose visa has been cancelled, has managed to land at Melbourne airport this morning — but it looks like he won’t be given a platform for his extremist views. In a Facebook post overnight, Newman said “through a chain of events the Lord has allowed me to get on a plane in spite of many objections by the airlines and Australia”.
Newman’s flight landed this morning, but Dr Katrina Haller from Right to Life Australia told Crikey he was stuck at the airport. Tweets from his supporters said that Newman would have a visa hearing this morning, but that has not been confirmed by Immigration Minister Peter Dutton. One of his supporters tweeted later this morning that it appeared Newman would be deported, labelling it “a sad day for civil liberties, free speech and human rights in Australia”. He now seems to be in detention, awaiting deportation.
Right To Life did return further calls about whether Newman was being deported this morning, and comment was sought from the Immigration Minister’s office. In a statement to the ABC’s James Glenday, a spokesperson for Minister Peter Dutton said that Newman had filed an injunction in the Federal Court against the government preventing his entry to Australia. That will be heard today.