The Netherlands has approximately 500 jihadists and several thousand sympathizers of jihadist ideology, general intelligence service AIVD said in a report published on Monday. "They pose a potential threat. The threshold for committing an attack in the name of Islamic State or Al Qaeda seems to have decreased", the AIVD said, NU.nl reports.
Dutch society has been pressured by the revival of right-wing extremism over the past years, the National Coordinator for Counter-terrorism and Security said in a new report published on Monday. The Coordinator looked into right-wing extremist violence in Western Europe and the historical and international context of right-wing extremism in the Netherlands, NU.nl reports.
Dutch municipalities, the police and security services are currently actively monitoring at least 160 radicalized Muslims. Amsterdam accounts for the biggest share of that number, with 59 radicalized people currently under the municipality's eye, the Volkskrant reports.
The authorities in Arnhem has been intensively monitoring a group of about 25 radicalized Muslims for some time, mayor Ahmed Marcouch said. The seven men arrested last week on suspicion of planning a major terrorist attack in the Netherlands, belonged to this group, De Gelderlander reports.
Jawed S., a 19-year-old Afghan man suspected of stabbing two American tourists at Amsterdam Central Station on Friday, expected to die in the attack, his lawyer Simon van der Woude said on Tuesday. "My client seems to have taken into account that he would not survive his action himself, because a testament was found in his home in Germany", the lawyer said, ANP reports.
Amsterdam's approach to radicalization and the city's radicalization department are failing, and that can partly be attributed to the attitude of late mayor Eberhard van der Laan, is shown in two investigations launched after the dismissal of anti-radicalization officer Saadia ait-Taleb.
The court in Rotterdam sentenced 24-year-old Hasan A. from Eindhoven to 30 months in prison and institutionalized psychiatric treatment for preparing for terrorist crimes. The sentence is higher than the two years the Public Prosecutor demanded. A. must also complete a deradicalization trajectory, AD reports.
Anti-Islam organization Pegida is getting smaller in the Netherlands, but its remaining supporters are increasingly radical, Minister Sander Dekker of Legal Protection - which falls under the Ministry of Justice and Security - said on Tuesday, the Volkskrant reports.
Amsterdam, and former mayor Eberhard van der Laan, never implemented a secret anti-radicalization campaign, deputy mayor Eric van der Burg wrote in a letter to the city council. "It was investigated whether an eventual campaign could contribute to counter radicalization", he wrote. But the campaign was eventually rejected and never implemented, he emphasized, AT5 reports.
Recently deceased Amsterdam mayor Eberhard van der Laan launched a secret anti-radicalization campaign that the city council knew nothing about, Elsevier reported on Sunday. The GroenLinks faction in Amsterdam is surprised by the commotion this report caused, saying that the project was discussed in the city council in March, NU.nl reports.
Controversial imam El-Alami Amaouch, who was deported from Belgium last year, is now preaching in The Hague, the Telegraaf reports based on its own research. According to the newspaper, he is spreading his ideals in the neighborhoods of Transvaal and Schilderswijk.
Last year there were five investigations within the Dutch Armed Forces into possible radicalization of employees, ANP reports based on documents received from Defense at the news wire's request. Three of the investigations concluded that the involved employees were not radicalized. The other two are still ongoing.
In half of the municipalities in the Netherlands, nothing is being done to prevent radicalization and jihadism, according to a study by the Security and Justice Inspectorate. Small and medium-sized municipalities in particular ignore this task, RTL Nieuws reports.
Islamic organizations are critical of the decision of Minister Stef Blok of Security and Justice to ban controversial imam Fawas Jneid from two neighborhoods in The Hague. The ban is in violation of the constitution and is part of the state's witch hunt on anyone who has a different viewpoint than that of the public opinion, the organizations wrote on Facebook, NOS reports.
Dutch woman Laura H. will be released from custody and can await trail in freedom, as long as she keeps to a number of conditions, the court in Rotterdam ruled on Thursday. She has to wear an ankle monitor, stay away from borders and airports, check in with the rehabilitation service on a regular basis and is not allowed any contact with her husband, NOS reports.
An Amsterdam man arrested at the Philips Stadium in Eindhoven during a Guus Meeuwis concert on June 9th, is suspected of preparing for a terrorist offense, the Public Prosecutor announced. The suspect was released from custody at his arraignment on Friday.
The VVD and CDA again firmly stated that they will not work with anti-Islam party PVV and its leader Geert Wilders. Formation negotiator Herman Tjeenk Willink asked VVD leader Mark Rutte and CDA leader Sybrand Buma to put in writing why they will not form a government with Wilders. They dismissed Wilders as untrustworthy and "increasingly radical", the Volkskrant reports
At least five religious leaders known for their extremist views were added to the Netherlands counterterrorism radar between January 2016 and March 2017, the National Coordinator for Counterterrorism and Security Dick Schoof said to AD. The Coordinator would not say how many people are currently on the extremist religious leader list.
The list consists of foreign preachers and other forms of religious leaders who spread anti-democratic messages, or messages of hate and violence. The Netherlands can refuse Visas to the people on the list.
The police searched the home of an Amsterdam man caught filming the entrance of the PSV stadium in Eindhoven during a Guus Meeuwis concert on Friday. The police are still being tight-lipped about the investigation, only saying that the 29-year-old man is still in custody and is being questioned.
"We are naturally investigating his intentions. That's why we also investigated his home", the police said in a statement on Monday night.
From September 1st, teachers and other people who work with children and young people can call an especially established helpline for advice on how to deal with religious extremism and radicalization. The Dutch government is establishing the helpline based on advice from special reporter Naima Azough, AD reports.
The Netherlands' debate on jihadists is characterized by a simple, sometimes sensational misrepresentation, according to terrorism experts Edwin Bakker and Peter Grol in their new book Nederlandse jihadisten, van naive idealisten tot geharde terroristen. Jihadists can't all be recognized in time, and therefore can't always be stopped. And if you managed to stop them, it is unreasonable to expect that they will suddenly turn into a "model citizen who embraces democracy", they write in the book, AD reports.
According to Hans van Wageningen, D66 States member in Limburg, PVV leader Geert Wilders is hoping for a terrorist attack in the Netherlands shortly before the election on March 15th. "He hopes for an attack just before the election and that he'll be sitting plush in The Hague when the smoke clears", he said on Twitter on Wednesday night.
Amsterdam is taking on the internet in the fight against radicalization, the municipality announced on Wednesday. The municipality plans to use multiple online tools in this fight. Starting with using social media to try to find and contain radicalizing posts, Het Parool reports.
According to the municipality, social media plays an increasingly important role in polarization and radicalization. "With this approach we as municipality want to better respond to this development", a spokesperson said to the newspaper.