Dutch officials have initiated an investigation into Rotterdam Islamic University President Ahmet Akgündüz, a staunch supporter of the Turkish government, who said that killing members of the faith-based Gülen movement was legitimate.
The Turkish consulate in Rotterdam confiscated the Turkish passports of a number of Dutch-Turkish people believed to be affiliated with the Gulen movement. The people involved were told that they are now classified as a fugitive and were given a one-day passport to fly to Turkey and prove their innocence in front of a judge.
What really annoyed the Dutch government, however, was when the Turkish consul general sent a letter to local authorities in the Netherlands advising them how to curb public protests opposing the government in Ankara. That brought a coldly dismissive response from foreign minister, Bert Koenders: “The Netherlands deals with Dutch society and that has nothing to do with the Turkish government.”
Dutch Education Minister Jet Bussemaker announced that there is a parliamentary debate over the Islamic University of Rotterdam for cancellation of the “university status” of the institution due to Rector Ahmet Akgündüz’s repeatedly hateful and discriminatory remarks against Turkey’s minorities and the Gülen movement.
Judges in Haarlem have banned four mothers from calling an Islamic primary school in Zaanstad a ‘terrorist’ school. People who press ahead with saying the school supports terrorism face a fine of €1,000 with a maximum of €10,000.
Dutch police on Wednesday detained a second Turkish man, a supporter of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, on suspicion of death threats and hate speech made against Erdoğan critics in the Netherlands. Rotterdam police detained a 43-year-old Dutchman of Turkish descent who is suspected of having threatened critics of the Turkish president and backers of US-based Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen.
Dutch police on Monday detained a 42-year-old Dutchman of Turkish descent for alleged death threats and hate speech after the failed Turkish coup in July, which has ratcheted up tension among Turks in the Netherlands. The arrested man is an Erdogan supporter and he is suspected of having threatened Gulen backers online and in person, a Dutch official said on condition of anonymity.
Lists are circulating in Amsterdam containing the names of Turkish students in Amsterdam schools, with details on who supports Fethullah Gulen and Who Supports Turkish president Tayyip Erdogan. About 150 primary school students did not show up for school this week due to “intimidation and bullying” related to tensions in the Turkish community. The municipality deployed extra education inspectors to visit parents who are keeping their children home from school.
Business people associated with exiled opposition leader Fethullah Gülen, or accused of supporting him, have filed official police complaints, the Parool newspaper reported. The Dutch government last week called for Dutch Turks who had been targeted to contact the police.
Parties in the Tweede Kamer – the lower house of Dutch parliament – are furious about statements the Turkish ambassador to the Netherlands made pressuring the Dutch government to help hunt down supporters of the Gulen-movement. Numerous parliamentarians expressed their annoyance to NU.nl.