( dpa ) - A Swiss-born Muslim scholar who is banned from visiting the United States will be the keynote speaker at a government-funded conference in Australia next week.
Government spokesman Laurie Fergusen on Saturday defended the decision to fete Oxford University's Professor Tariq Ramadan, describing the row over his visit as "a storm in a teacup."
The US government has accused Ramadan of providing material support for terrorism.
Amir Ali, who served on the previous government's advisory panel on integrating Muslim Australians, berated Brisbane's Griffith University for hosting a speaker he said tailored his talks to different audiences, alternately soothing and then inciting.
"It seems that these people speak in different languages to different audiences and they don't convey the same message," Ali said.
The Australia/Israel Jewish Affairs Council said Ramadan was "skilled at projecting moderation to Western audiences while engaging in apologetics for various forms of Islamist extremism."