Leiden Univ. to investigate Antisemitism in right-wing politician's department
Leiden University ordered an investigation into Antisemitism within a department of the Faculty of Law, where Paul Cliteur works. Cliteur was until recently a Senator for far-right populist party FvD, which had a bit of a meltdown last week over Antisemitic and homophobic messages sent by its youth department JFvD.
The investigation will be conducted by an external committee and will commence as soon as possible, the university said in a statement, NOS reports.
Over the weekend, Leiden rector magnificus Carel Stolker called the "accusation of a pattern of Antisemitism" around FvD extremely worrying. According to him, it also affects professor Cliteur, who guided FvD founder Thierry Baudet during his PhD and is often referred to as Baudet's intellectual mentor.
After the storm caused by the JFvD messages, Cliteur expressed his support for Baudet and the man's ideological line in newspaper Trouw. But Stolker felt that the professor really should have distanced himself from that.
According to the university, the accusations of Antisemitism caused great unrest within the faculty. "The executive board is taking the accusations seriously because, if correct, they would clearly conflict with the values that Leiden University stands for," the university said.
In a statement on LinkedIn, Cliteur said that he awaits the results of the investigation "with great confidence". Writing in the third person, Cliteur said that he intended to endorse the ideological line of the FvD as it is in the election program. "Obviously, Cliteur does not endorse the bad statements in messages that pop up in youth text groups and that some believe they heard from Baudet in private discussions."