Netherlands considers banning Salafist Islam

Lodewijk Asscher (Photo: Commons)Lodewijk Asscher (Photo: Commons)

The Dutch government is going to keep track of all Salafist organization and look into whether it is possible to ban them, Minister Lodewijk Asscher of Social Affairs told the Tweede Kamer, lower house of parliament, on Thursday, NU reports.

The Tweede Kamer requested this because they are worried about the impact to these orthodox Islamic organizations on jihadism and radicalization in the Netherlands.

According to Asscher, who is also the Deputy Prime Minister, the Public Prosecutor is looking into whether the law is "up to date" when it comes to antidemocratic organizations. "We now look differently at Salafism. Salafism is a concern. But the question is whether a ban is the most effective." the minister said, according to NU. "Orthodox thoughts are allowed. But a jihadist is already over the limit of criminal law."

The minister continued that if the ideology behind Salafism is at odds with the law, it must indeed be addressed. But this will be difficult, according to him, because there are different tendencies inside Salafism and not everyone is pursuing a political ideology.