Netherlands: Muslim broadcaster increasingly controlled by radicals

Radical Muslims have taken control of the Dutch Muslim Broadcaster (NMO). At least three of the public broadcaster's eight directors are extremely controversial, according to TV programme Nova.

Until recently, the Netherlands had two Islamic public broadcasters: the moderate NMO and the orthodox Dutch Islamic Broadcasting Organisation (NIO). Media watchdog Commissariaat voor de Media demanded that the two would merge so that the Islamic faith would have a single representative body in the public system. But according to Nova, this resulted in NIO staging a coup of NMO.

NMO has 2.5 transmission hours on TV each week. Following the alleged coup NMO now consists of eight directors, all of them representing orthodox currents. The representatives of the liberal Alevitic and Ahmadiyya currents, who chiefly ran NMO until recently, have been kicked out, as they themselves stated in Nova.

One of the members of the new board of directors is Yahia Bouyafa, who "is believed to have close ties to the Muslim Brotherhood," as Nova reported. Another is Abdelmajid Kayroun, chairman of the Al Farouq mosque in Utrecht "whose imam was deported from the Netherlands in 2001 for espionage for the Libyan secret service". Also among the eight directors is Mohammed Nanhekhan, a member of the "radical movement World Islamic Mission".

The Commissionership for the Media says it has "no indications" that anything is wrong. It will only instigate an inquiry if the Justice Ministry or the secret service AIVD requests it, as a spokesperson stated.

Nova asked MP Jeroen Dijsselbloem (PvdA) for a reaction. He expressed his concern over "the increasing influence of conservative Islam within various Islamic organisations in the Netherlands".

Source: NIS News (English)

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