Monday 10 August 2020

Man arrested in The Hague over Facebook threat against Wilders

Police badge and radio.

Photo: Depositphotos.com

A 26-year-old man has been arrested at The Hague’s main railway station after placing a video on Facebook in which he appears to say he is planning to attack the parliamentary complex or the organiser of a cartoon competition, police have confirmed.

PVV leader Geert Wilders is organising a controversial Mohammed cartoon contest which will take place within the high-security PVV offices within parliament later this year.

Wilders said later on Twitter he had been made aware of the film by the Dutch counter-terrorism unit NCTB. ‘The NCTB told me this morning that a man had said in a Facebook film he had arrived in the Netherlands to kill me.’

The police were alerted to the film, which was made at a branch of the Doner Company at the railway station on Monday.  In the video, which is in Urdu, the man reportedly states: ‘I am just five minutes from parliament where the exhibition is’.

According to broadcaster NOS, he then goes on to say: ‘Only he is my target. I will succeed if that is what Allah wants… they make jokes about our prophet.’ He then appeals to people to share the video. The man does not mention Wilders by name.

Court

The man, who may be Pakistani but whose identity has not been established, will appear in court for a remand hearing on Friday.

NOS says the man is extremely active on social media and has traveled widely in Europe over the past few months.

Both prime minister Mark Rutte and foreign minister Stef Blok  have distanced the government from the contest, pointing out that Wilders is not part of the cabinet. Rutte also described the competition as provocation.

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