Top Dutch businesses told to pull adverts from "xenophobic" Telegraaf newspaper
A anti-asylum seeker headline in Dutch newspaper the Telegraaf on Saturday led to a campaign calling on businesses to pull their advertisements from the "xenophobic" newspaper.
The headline in Dutch read: "Kanslose aslieplaag ongehinderd verder". Translated to English, it reads: "Prospectless asylum plague continues without hindrance".
The newspaper's headline led to outraged reactions on social media, including from some prominent Dutch people. Crime writer Peter R. De Vries criticized how the Telegraaf does its reporting: "In 4 days the Telegraaf headlined about 'asylum hopper invasion', 'prospectless asylum plague' and 'asylum scum'. Dangerous rabble rousing", he tweeted with the hashtag stigmatizing. Author Rutger Bregman tweeted: "Now don't differentiate: 'Asylum plague' is inflammatory hate speech which reduces men to animals."
The social media discussion also drew a parallel between the Telegraaf's "asielplaag" headline and a headline in a World War II era anti-Semitic tabloid, De Misthoorn, which wrote about the "jodenplaag", or "Jewish plague" in English.
The headline also led to a campaign calling on KLM, Coredon, Wehkamp and other companies that advertise in the Telegraaf to stop doing so and boycott the newspaper.
"We call on you to stop advertising in the Telegraaf until the newspaper publicly apologizes for spreading hateful and dehumanizing texts about asylum seekers, and they publicly announced a change of course and stopping spreading hatred and intolerance", the campaign reads. "The ads that your business places in this paper suggest that you support hate campaigns against asylum seekers."
The campaign was spread on social media with the hastag #StopXenofoobTelegraaf, or "stop xenophobic Telegraaf" in English.