Hundreds of people packed into the Grote Markt in central Haarlem on Saturday to show support for the city’s mayor who has gone into hiding after receiving threats.
Wienen himself turned up at Saturday’s demonstration and thanked people for their support. ‘The fact that you are here for me is a sign that we all support democracy, a society in which you do not have to be afraid of violence,’ he said. ‘I am proud of Haarlem and Haarlemmers.’
Home affairs minister Kajsa Ollongren was among the speakers at the rally. ‘The threats made against Wienen were so serious that he has had to go into hiding,’ she said. ‘This is unacceptable in a democratic society.’
Police have declined to comment on the nature of the threats made against Jos Wienen, who has been under extra security since last month. However, local news website NH Nieuws has suggested there maybe a link with Wienen’s tough approach to organised crime.
Some have pointed the finger at the motorbike gang Hells Angels because Wienen closed down their clubhouse last year. However, the group has denied any involvement.
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