Geert Wilders is on trial for stating his opinion in the context of public debate, because he has “spoken nothing but the truth”
Wilders, is charged with five counts of giving religious offense to Muslims and inciting hatred and discrimination against Muslims – since when is public criticism an offense and since when did offending or insulting someone become a crime? Followers of Islam offend me every single day. I find the attitude of Islam insulting – anyone who does not submit to Islam is regarded as worthy of death or oppression. That is worse than insulting.
“Mr Wilders is being prosecuted for describing the Koran as “fascist” and for comparing it to Adolf Hitler’s book Mein Kampf, a text that is banned in the Netherlands.
In March 2008, he released a film called Fitna, Arabic for Strife, which linked the verses in the Koran to anti-Semitism, terrorist attacks in New York and London and urged that, like Nazism, “Islamic ideology has to be defeated”.
Last year, the Dutch Court of Appeal ruled that, despite the case being dropped by prosecutors, that it considered “criminal prosecution obvious for the insult of Islamic worshippers” being compared to Nazis.
Speaking at his trial yesterday, Mr Wilders said: “I am sitting here as a suspect because I have spoken nothing but the truth. I have said what I have said and I will not take one word back.”
Throwing down an open challenge to the court, Mr Wilders, 47, attacked the three judges sitting in the Amsterdam court for prosecuting him for “stating my opinion in the context of public debate”.
“I can assure you, I will continue proclaiming it,” he said. ”