Muslims told judges trying anti-Islam MP Geert Wilders for hate speech Monday that he was dangerous, dividing a multicultural society that used to cohabit peacefully.
“Mr Wilders is a dangerous ideologist who has divided Dutch society,” Naoual Abaida, a trainee lawyer with a native Dutch mother and Moroccan father, told the court.
“I am asking you to protect me as a Muslim and a Moroccan against Mr Wilders,” she said, referring to his “Islam-bashing” and “insulting, polarising language“.
Wilders, 47, went on trial on October 4 for inciting hatred by calling Islam “fascist” and likening the Koran to Hitler’s “Mein Kampf“.
The prosecution service asked the court for his acquittal last Friday, saying his criticism, though hurtful, was not criminal.
On Monday, lawyers for Wilders’ accusers — a group of individuals from around the country — asked for a guilty verdict and a symbolic damages award of one euro.
“We are the daily target of xenophobic statements,” Mohamed Rabbae, politician and activist, told the judges as Wilders looked on, occasionally lifting his eyebrows or making faces.
“Our children have become unsure about their future … in this climate of discrimination, hate and enmity as propagated by Mr Wilders.”
Mohammed Rabbae was considered by Hirsi Ali as a “Muslim racist“.