Dutch anti-Islam campaigner Geert Wilders on Monday refused to bow to pressure from other MPs to distance himself from the recent spell of anti-refugee violence.
‘Politicians and the press can drop dead,’ Wilders said on Twitter. ‘Distance yourself from your cowardice and betrayal of the Netherlands to Islam. Suckers.’
Wilders has previously issued statements rejecting the violence at protests about plans to locate refugee centres in several Dutch towns.
However, he has not made any comment in the wake of the Geldermalsen riots last Wednesday in which a mob of between 70 and 80 people attempted to storm the town hall, and hurled bricks and fireworks at the building.
Before the meeting, Wilders had urged people to ‘resist’ the establishment of a refugee centre in the town of 15,000.
‘Wilders has ignored the opportunity to condemn the violence in Geldermalsen,’ deputy prime minister Lodewijk Asscher said. He described the PVV leader, recently voted politician of the year by viewers of television programme EenVandaag, as a ‘trader in fear’.
Wilders expected Muslims to distance themselves from IS terrorism in the wake of Paris,’ said Labour MP Attje Kuiken. ‘Then I would expect him to distance himself from violence and racism in the Netherlands.’
Later in the week, fireworks were hurled at the home of a Somali family in Pannerden, south east of Arnhem. The perpetrators left behind a leaflet with a photograph of Wilders and the text ‘foreigners must go, this is just the beginning’.
Politiek en pers kunnen de rambam krijgen. Neem zelf lekker afstand van jullie lafheid en verraad van Nederland aan de islam. Sukkels.
— Geert Wilders (@geertwilderspvv) December 21, 2015
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