Fury at Wilders’ Taliban rape statement

Ministers and MPs have reacted furiously to a verbal attack by Geert Wilders on a journalist who was raped while being held captive by the Taliban in Afghanistan.

During Thursday’s debate on the government’s performance this year, Wilders raised the issue of reporter Joanie de Rijke, who was raped after being kidnapped by the Taliban and wrote a book about her experiences.
‘She showed understanding for this horrible deed and then was given tea and biscuits,’ Wilders said in parliament. That is symbolic for the ‘moral decline of our elite’, he was quoted as saying. Politicians, civil servants, managers and ‘subsidy swallowers’ have all lost their way and are suffering from Stockholm syndrome, he said.
GroenLinks leader Femke Halsema accused Wilders of having no ethical boundaries. ‘You should be ashamed,’ she said. ‘Not one millimeter,’ Wilders replied.
Prime minister Jan Peter Balkenende said the statement was ‘painful and tasteless’. De Rijke is ‘once again the victim because she cannot defend herself,’ the PM said.
De Rijke herself said in the AD that Wilders’ comments were ‘very, very painful’. ‘If Wilders had read my book he would not have said this…. I am furious at my kidnappers and my rapists. What Wilders says does not add up.’

Thank you for donating to DutchNews.nl.

We could not provide the Dutch News service, and keep it free of charge, without the generous support of our readers. Your donations allow us to report on issues you tell us matter, and provide you with a summary of the most important Dutch news each day.

Make a donation