“The Egyptian military regime should concern itself with the rights and protection of Christians in Egypt and preventing further bloodshed rather than worrying about me.”
The Dutch Ambassador to Egypt, Susan Blankhart was called to the Egyptian Foreign Ministry, today, to protest ‘defamation of Islam’ in a new book by the Hon. Geert Wilders. Â Wilders’ book is scheduled to be released here in the US, next April.Â The Egyptians were likely using this Â opportunity Â as a mediaÂ event. We note that this occurred while our State Department’s conference onÂ The Istanbul Process Combating Intolerance conferenceÂ was taking place Â in DC. Â With representatives from member states of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), the EU, the OSCE, gathered in Washington why miss an opportunity to stifle any criticism of Islam and deny Free Speech? Â After all this plenary session in DC is developing ‘best practices’ to rein in religious intolerance. Â How Orwellian of them.
Egyptian Human Rights blogger, Mahmoud ElsokbyÂ posted theÂ Al AhramÂ reportÂ aboutÂ this most recent example of intolerance by Egypt in the throes of electing a majority Muslim Brotherhood and Salafist parliament, “Egypt Summons Dutch Ambassador over anti-Islamic remarks”.
Egypt’s foreign ministry Wednesday summoned Dutch Ambassador Susan Blankhart to protest against what it perceives to be a defamation of Islam by parliament member Geert Wilders.
According to Dutch reports, Wilders is set to release a book in April next year to “examine the true nature of Islam.”
right-wing politician is no stranger to controversy, having released numerous statements that were deemed defamatory to Islam by the Arab and Muslim world.
His statements include accusing Islam of being violent by nature and saying that the Quran should be banned.
According to Egyptian diplomatic sources, the foreign ministry insisted it could not tolerate “such unacceptable acts that could affect the spirit of cooperation, which should prevail between countries.”
In June, a Dutch court cleared Wilders of inciting hatred and discrimination against Muslims.
Egyptian authorities have recentlyÂ banned himÂ from entering the country during a visit of a European Parliament delegation.
However, theÂ Al AhramÂ reportÂ had an error. According to the Freedom Party (PVV) headquarters in the Netherlands:
It is notÂ Geert Wilders, leader of the Dutch Party for Freedom (PVV), who was recently banned by the Egyptian authorities from entering Egypt, but Raymond De Roon MP, one of the PVV’s foreign affairs spokesmen.
Al Ahram was clearly confused about which Dutchman was banned from entering Egypt. This is a mere piffle, when the objective is to publicize Muslim outrage over any criticism of the divine word of Allah in the Qur’an.Â No matter, all this episode in Egypt does is raise the visibility and importance of Geert Wilder’s new book, yet to be published.Â It is left for Wilders to have the final word:
Fortunately we have freedom of opinion here. The Egyptian military regime should concern itself with the rights and protection of Christians in Egypt and preventing further bloodshed rather than worrying about me.