Friday, March 13, 2015 - 09:24
ISIS a "Zionist plot" tweet not enough to fire Justice official
The Justice official who tweeted that terrorist organization Islamic State (ISIS) is a "Zionist plot", can not be dismissed. Deputy Prime Minister Lodewijk Asscher (Social Affairs) made premature remarks about the tweeting official and thereby "disturbed" the labor relations. That is the conclusion of the Advisory Committee on Fundamental Rights and Job performance for Officials (AGFA), NRC reports. AFGA is headed by Job Cohen (PvdA) and advises the government if there is a conflict with an official about the limits of freedom of expression. The Ministry of Security and Justice turned to this committee for advice in the case of Yasmina Haifi (PvdA), project manager at the National Cyber Security Center. In August last year she wrote that ISIS is a "preconceived plan of Zionists" who "knowingly want to make Islam look bad". According to Cohen, this tweet is not enough for dismissal, a written reprimand will do. This advice is in the possession of NRC, despite the Ministry's attempts to keep it secret. Haifi's tweet caused a political uproar and several parliamentary questions. Asscher called it a "horrendous" tweet, which showed "almost immeasurable stupidity" and a "classic form of anti-Semitism". Former Minster Ivo Opstelten (Security and Justice) said that Haifi "wil not come back to this post again. Never." According to AGFA, the ministers were not allowed to discuss her suspension in public before she was personally informed about it. Cohen states that Haifi is guilty of a mild form of dereliction of duty, especially because she expressed her opinion on Twitter. But as Haifi worked in the personnel department and was not substantially involved in the topic, her freedom of expression is greater than her misconduct. Her actions were not severe enough to warrant a dismissal. She also regretted her tweet and has a very good record. The Ministry of Security and Justice now has to decide whether Haifi, who has been suspended since her tweet, will be dismissed.