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Dutch Freedom Party candidate suspends campaigning

25 Feb 2017 | By NewsBytes Desk
The Dutch General Elections

Geert Wilders, the Dutch anti-Islam politician has suspended all further public campaigning ahead of the general elections next month due to security concerns.

The move comes after a member of his police security team had been arrested for allegedly leaking details of his whereabouts to Dutch-Moroccan criminal gangs.

However, Dutch police chief, Erik Akerboom said Wilders's security was not compromised.

In context: The Dutch General Elections

IntroductionDutch general elections: Overview

The 2017 Dutch general elections will be held on 15 March 2017.

The main parties include the Labour Party, People's Party for Freedom and Democracy, the Christian Democratic Appeal, and the far-right Party for Freedom.

Intelligence agencies warned of possible Russian hacking, hence votes will be counted by hand this year and not through computers as is usually done.

Freedom PartyFreedom Party in the lead?

Analysts predicted that the far-right Freedom Party may be in the lead, and could possibly sweep this election.

The Freedom Party founded by Geert Wilders, has pushed a strong anti-Islam agenda this year. The party seeks to ban the sale of the Quran, close mosques and Islamic schools, shut Dutch borders and ban Muslim migrants.

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Geert Wilders guilty of incitement

WildersGeert Wilders guilty of incitement

A Dutch court has found Geert Wilders guilty of insulting a group and inciting discrimination.

Wilders was found guilty of inciting religions discrimination after he spoke at a rally where he called Dutch-Moroccans "third-rate" citizens.

Authorities received over 6400 complaints about Wilders's statements, however, his support base in the country also grew exponentially due to the case.

43% Dutch have problem with Moroccan immigrants

Wilders commissioned a research report by the PVV which found 43% of the Dutch public believe the country has a problem with Moroccans. In fact, a research report compiled by Chatham House found that over 60% of Europeans were in favour of limiting Muslim migration.

22 Feb 2017Geert Wilders in security leak scare

A member of far-right Dutch politician Geert Wilders's security team was arrested after he was caught giving information on Wilders's movements to Moroccan criminals.

Wilders has been vocally critical of Moroccans in the Netherlands and has vowed to deport a majority of them.

The official who was arrested was also of Moroccan descent.

25 Feb 2017Dutch Freedom Party candidate suspends campaigning