NEW YORK (Reuters) - Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling labelled US presidential candidate Donald Trump bigoted after receiving the PEN/Allen Foundation Literary Service Award in New York.
Rowling, who won the prize for her efforts to fight inequality and censorship, criticised the presumptive Republican nominee, who has called for a temporary ban on Muslims entering the United States.
But the British author stuck up for Trump's right to visit the United Kingdom, despite the outrage his remarks had caused in her homeland.
"I find almost everything that Mr. Trump says objectionable. I consider him offensive and bigoted. But he has my full support to come to my country and be offensive and bigoted there," Rowling said to applause from the audience on Monday (Mon 16).
In January, British lawmakers debated a petition signed by more than half a million Britons to ban Trump from Britain over remarks on Muslims, before deciding the Republican candidate should he allowed to visit so his views could be challenged.
But Rowling said in her speech: "If you seek the removal of freedoms from an opponent simply on the grounds that they have offended you, you have crossed a line to stand alongside tyrants who imprison, torture and kill on exactly the same justifications."
Last December, after Trump stood by his proposal for a temporary ban on Muslims from entering the United States, Rowling tweeted: "How horrible. Voldemort was nowhere near as bad."
Voldemort is the arch-villain of her popular Harry Potter series which has been published in over 200 territories and spawned eight films and three theme parks.