Wednesday 08 February 2023

Threats against politicians top 1,000 so far this year

Photo: Depositphotos.com

Over 1,000 reports of MPs and ministers being threatened were made to a special police team in the first nine months of this year and the full year total is likely to be double the 588 reports made in 2021 as a whole.

Reports have risen since the start of the coronavirus epidemic, team leader Ruud Gründmann said. ‘‘At the end of the day, it’s about safeguarding democracy and protecting the people who stand for it.’

The threats are both online and physical and have changed in seriousness and intensity, Gründmann said. ‘Politicians and minister are being harassed and yelled at,’ he said. ‘They don’t always make a formal complaint, but it is symbolic for the time.’

The previous peak was in 2018, when 620 complaints were made. Most of those were made by far right leader Geert Wilders, who was subject to a string of threats from outside the EU.

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