Historian Tim Pat Coogan has stated that he was turned down twice for a visa in recent months by the American Embassy in Dublin and never received a proper explanation.

Coogan has long been a prominent defender of the United States against anti American sentiment and a major booster for the role of the Irish Diaspora in Irish affairs.

He was due to visit the U.S. to launch his new book ’The Famine Plot’ on the East Coast. The  book is published by Palgrave MacMillan.

Speaking to the Irish Times at the launch of his book in Dublin he stated, “I was turned down on the first visa I applied for; [the second time] they told me I had gone through the wrong website and I was refunded the money.”

He said his third application remained in limbo.

“I got [the Department of] Foreign Affairs to check it out and they got an apologetic thing back from the embassy and they said Mr Coogan has done all the right things,” he added. “They said there must be someone with the same name on a [no entry] list somewhere.”

IrishCentral first revealed that Coogan, the 77-year-old historian who is one of Ireland’s best known media figures, had been turned down by the American Embassy despite a direct appeal to Ambassador Dan Rooney.

He is one of Ireland's best known historical writers, authoring such books as Ireland Since the Rising (1966), The IRA (1970), On the Blanket (1980), Wherever Green is Worn (2000), Ireland in the Twentieth Century (2003).

He has written widely acclaimed biographies of both De Valera and Collins. He is a former editor of the Irish Press newspaper.

He is one of the best known Irish in the U.S. and has made numerous visits here on book tours and meeting Irish American leaders.