Nationalist politician threatened after election win; 'Unacceptable', says PM
"Unacceptable", Prime Minister Mark Rutte said about threats made against FvD leader Thierry Baudet after the nationalist party's major win in the Provincial States elections last week. All politicians must be able to perform their duties in safety and freedom, Rutte said to the Telegraaf. "Democracy is not easy, but it is a valuable possession. We must all protect it."
Over the weekend a video filmed at an anti-racism demonstration in Amsterdam circulated on social media. In the video a demonstrator with a scarf covering his face sings: "If you want to shoot Thierry, then say bang." The Amsterdam police and Public Prosecutor are investigating. The police are looking into whether more such videos are circulating, and what exactly was said, a spokesperson said to NU.nl. The Prosecutor is investigating whether the statements were punishable.
On Friday a Utrecht University lecturer was suspended after he wrote on Facebook "Vokert, where are you?" He was referring to Volkert van der Graaf, the man who shot and killed populist politician Pim Fortuyn in 2002. This Facebook post is not punishable in itself, a spokesperson for the Public Prosecutor said to NU.nl. "We received many questions about it, so we made a provisional legal assessment", he said. The Prosecutor called it a "tasteless comment", but added that it is "probably not punishable" as the text is not an explicit or concrete call to harm Baudet. According to the spokesperson, no charges have been pressed against the lecturer. "As soon as that is the case, we will take another look."
Ministers Ferdinand Grapperhaus of Justice and Security and Ingrid van Engelshoven of Education, Culture and Science condemned the lecturer's comment on Friday, according to NOS. Other politicians expressed disgust about the video filmed at the demonstration.
Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema called the statements in the video reprehensible. "Various images have appeared on social media with threatening statements made during the anti-racism demonstration", she said on Sunday, according to NU.nl. "These texts are reprehensible. Amsterdam has great freedom of demonstration. This is cherished, but cannot be misused to intimidate others."
"Weird how with these people boundless love for refugees goes hand in hand with a deadly hatred for political opponents" ChristenUnie leader Gert-Jan Segers said on Twitter. PVV leader Geert Wilders tweeted: "I would say: arrest and prosecute the dangerous left-wing madman of that video." GroenLinks parliamentarian Zihni Ozdil said on Twitter: "Anti racism is meaningless if you turn a blind eye to racism and fascism from the other side."