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Europawahl Niederlande Wilders 22.05.2014
Image: Reuters

Wilders: I'll show Muhammad cartoons on TV

June 4, 2015

The Dutch anti-Islam MP Geert Wilders says he plans to show cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad on Dutch television. He had wanted to exhibit them in parliament, but was knocked back.


Geert Wilders announced on his website that he would use television airtime allocated to his party to broadcast the images. Last month, he said he intended to exhibit the caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad in the Dutch parliament.

Physical depictions of the Prophet are considered blasphemous by Muslims.

Wilders said the idea for the exhibition was rejected by the Dutch lower house.

"Since the Bureau of the board of the Chamber [of Representatives] has rejected my request, I will soon show some of the cartoons of national television, during the broadcast slot allocated to my political party," he said in a statement.

"Terrorists have to realize that they will never win and how important freedom of speech is for us in the Netherlands."

Political parties in the Netherlands receive a small portion of airtime each year and broadcasting authorities are not able to veto what is aired.

The announcement comes a month after Wilders gave a speech during an event in Texas that was critical of Islam, and included a Muhammad cartoon contest. Shortly after Wilders left the event, it was targeted by two gunmen who were themselves shot dead by police.

The attack was claimed by the "Islamic State," the first assault for which it has taken credit inside the US. But investigators do not know whether the group was directly or indirectly involved.

Wilders, who formed his Freedom Party in 2006, faces charges for discrimination and hate speech in the Netherlands after vowing to reduce the number of Moroccans there. The party holds 12 of the 150 seats in the Dutch lower house.

He was previously acquitted in 2011 of hate speech, as judges said his rhetoric happened in the context of a heated national debate on immigration and multiculturalism.

jr/bk (AP, geertwilders.nl)

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