Netherlands: More labor politicians sign Hizb ut-Tahrir petition

Two more local Dutch politicians signed the Hizb ut-Tahrir petition, both belonging to the Labor Party.
- Hatice Can-Engin, alderwoman in Gilze-Rijen, immigrated to the Netherlands from Turkey in 1978. Originally she denied signing the petition.
- Najia Siamari, until recently alderwoman in IJsselstein

See also: Netherlands: Hizb ut-Tahrir petition update

Alderwoman in Gilze-Rijen Hatice Can-Engin (Labour PvdA) signed a petition from controversial organisation Hizb ut-Tahrir two weeks ago. This emerged from a statement that the alderwoman had sent round on Monday evening.

After it became clear to her that the General Intelligence and Security Service (AIVD) considers the members of Hizb ut-Tahrir to be radical Muslims, the alderwoman of Turkish descent distanced herself from the group and has rescinded her support for the petition, which protests the defamation of Islam.

"I supported this message because I place a high value on dialogue and harmony in Dutch society. Since I am such a champion of democracy, dialogue and harmony, I now emphatically distance myself from this organisation. I regret any misunderstandings that may have arisen," the statement from the local politician read.

Hizb ut-Tahrir (Liberation Party) is banned in many Islamic countries and a number of countries in Europe. The organisation's name was also on pamphlets circulated in the Netherlands at the beginning of the year protesting the film on the Koran by Freedom party (PVV) leader Geert Wilders.

Another PvdA politician has been reprimanded in connection with the petition. The PvdA faction in the Rotterdam submunicipality of Charlois asked council member Bouchra Ismaili to resign from her seat after it became known that she had signed the petition as well.

Source: Expatica (English), Trouw, DePers 1, 2 (Dutch)

See also: Rotterdam: It's a wonder the rest are ok, Rotterdam: Politician signs Hizb ut-Tahrir petition, but stays anyway, Netherlands: Hizb ut-Tahrir youth in campaign against Geert Wilders


Anonymous said...

I dont understand your post. What is the problem with signing the petition? Is it a crime? It is really odd because a lot of people in the Netherlands think it is a fundamental right that they should be allowed to insult Islam and Muslims, but when Muslims protest and make a petition the Muslims have no right to do so. Actually, if Dutch people truly believe in absolute freedom of speech then they should have no problem with people making death threats. After all death threats are just words.

Esther said...

The comparison would be to a Dutch politician signing a neo-Nazi movement petition against building a mosque.

They could argue that there's nothing wrong with a petition against building a mosque.

In fact, they would be supporting a racist totalitarian movement. What does it say about them?

This same controversy is now going on in Denmark, where imams and Muslim leaders participated in a Hizb ut-Tahrir protest. On the one hand, they have a right to exercise their freedom of speech. on the other hand, by supporting a movement openly dedicated to overthrowing democracy, they're showing support for its agenda.

Anonymous said...

Freedom if speech is not absolute. It is illegal to shout "Fire" in a packed theatre. It is illegal to use threatening or racist language.
On that basis the Koran should be banned as it threatens the life of pagans. Oh. Before anyone comments. The OT and the NT could be expurgated as well. said...

Freedom of speech is absolute, but threatening language is aggression not speech; and yelling "fire" in a crowded theater is not speech, but a breaking of the (implied) rules to be admitted in the theater (not make noises and not spread unjustified fears).