Dutch Raise Terror Threat Level After Film Stokes Muslim Hostility
ICC Note: Statements from the Koran are often used to justify Muslim persecution of Christians - now that a film is coming out that shows the Koran being used as an inspiration for terror in the Netherlands, the country is on alert for terrorist attacks.
3/7/08 The Netherlands (Deutsche Welle) - The Netherlands raised its national risk level of a terrorist attack to "substantial," ahead of the release of a short film critical of the Quran produced by populist far-right politician Geert Wilders.
The Dutch centrist coalition government has raised the terrorism alert level from "limited" to "substantial" because of "increased international threats," a justice ministry spokesman announced Thursday, March 6.
The move anticipates the release of a film about the Quran that has triggered controversy and security concerns ahead of its release later this month.
"Fitna" was produced by Geert Wilders, leader of the Dutch Freedom Party and the Netherlands' most outspoken critic of Islam.
In the past, Wilders has deemed the Quran incompatible with Dutch values. He recently said his film will show how the Muslim holy book is "an inspiration for intolerance, murder and terror."
"Fitna" is an Arabic term used in the Quran usually translated as "strife" or "discord."
NATO, meanwhile, is believed to be concerned about the safety of its troops in Afghanistan after hundreds of demonstrators took to the streets of Mazar-i-Sharif earlier in the week in protest. The crowds set fire to Dutch flags and called for the immediate withdrawal of the Dutch army from Afghanistan.
"I fear that soldiers will come under fire because of this film, and I am not afraid to say so," said NATO General Secretary Jaap de Hoop.
Various Dutch employers' associations and employees unions, as well as representatives of the Protestant Church have also urged Wilders not to release the film.
A majority of Dutch people want the film to be broadcast even though they fear it will stoke tension with Muslims and harm relations with Arab nations, a poll showed on Wednesday... [Go To Full Story]