Man arrested for threatening video about black politician

Sylvana Simons
Sylvana Simons speaking at De Balie, Amsterdam. November 26, 2016De BalieWikimedia CommonsCC-BY

A 37-year-old man from Kudelstaart was arrested on suspicion of making and posting a threatening video online about politician Sylvana Simons. The man turned himself in at a police station on Tuesday and he is being questioned, the Amsterdam police announced.

In the video Simons, who is a candidate parliamentarian for new party DENK, is portrayed as the victim of a racist lynching. Her face was photoshopped onto the bodies of lynched black Americans. 

Simons is now living with extra security and bodyguards. On television program Pauw on tuesday night she called it a "huge violation of my freedom of movement. there are many things I can no longer do as spontaneously as I used to." 

She also said that she is especially worried about what effect these threats are having on her children. "As a mother it is heartbreaking to see your children miserable from powerlessness." Simons said. "My children are also on social media and saw the video."

PVV leader Geert Wilders responded to Simons appearance on Pauw by saying that the best thing would be to disband DENK. "The best course would of course be that Mrs Simons be placed under protection against herself and DENK is disbanded", he said on Twitter. 

This led to an indignant response from GroenLinks leader Jesse Klaver. "You yourself claim that you are being silenced, but to a threatened colleague you say she better stop. Unbelievable."