Berlin – German officials said Friday they had issued a visa to Iranian Vice President Mohammed Aliabadi to attend the football World Cup, but they made clear he was being given an official cold shoulder during his visit.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Martin Jaeger said diplomats had found no reason to deny Aliabadi a visa. This was despite the fact that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has cast doubt on the Holocaust and called for the destruction of Israel.

Holocaust denial is illegal under German law.