Anti-Islam Dutch politician to show cartoons of Prophet Mohammad in TV air time

EU(SSM/HSN/HJL): Far-right Dutch politician Geert Wilders will show cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) in TV air time given to his party, in a move that is certain to draw the anger of Muslims worldwide.

Far-right Dutch politician Geert Wilders (© AFP)

In a statement released on Friday, Wilders’ Party for Freedom (PVV) said that the cartoons will be shown on Dutch public television on June 20 at 1049 GMT with repeats on June 24 and July 3.

Earlier this month, Wilders had announced plans to show the cartoons on TV. He claimed that the move was aimed at ‘defending freedom of speech’ after an incident last month in which two gunmen were shot dead after opening fire at an art exhibition in the US state of Texas where caricatures of the Prophet Mohammad were being displayed.

Wilders delivered an anti-Islam speech at the event shortly before the attack, which occurred in May. Since then, Wilders has tried to get the Dutch parliament to stage an exhibition of the sketches cartoons depicting the Prophet (PBUH).

Wilders will show the cartoons during airtime that the Dutch Media Authority provides for parties to make political statements.

The authority, however, can withdraw a party’s right to airtime for up to four years if a judge rules that a hate crime has been committed during the broadcasts.

The PVV founder and leader faces prosecution over allegedly inciting racial hatred against Moroccans in the Netherlands.

Muslims regard cartoons of the Prophet (PHUB) as blasphemous.