Justice minister under guard after death threats

19th November 2004, Comments 0 comments

19 November 2004, BRUSSELS – Belgium's Justice Minister, Laurette Onkelinkx, has been given increased police protection after receiving death threats.

19 November 2004

BRUSSELS – Belgium's Justice Minister, Laurette Onkelinkx, has been given increased police protection after receiving death threats.

The Belgian federal prosecutor's office said late on Thursday that Onkelinkx was one of three leading Belgian politicians who had received the threats in a letter.

Former justice minister Philippe Moureaux and Brussels politician Mohamed Chahid had also been threatened, a spokesman for the prosecutor's office explained.

Speaking on Belgium's RTL radio station on Friday Onkelinkx said the Belgian authorities were trying to determine whether the threats against her and her political colleagues – all of whom are members of Belgian socialist parties – were in any way linked to the murder of Dutch film maker Theo van Gogh.

Van Gogh was allegedly murdered by an Islamic militant.

A letter pinned to his body with a knife suggested Van Gogh was killed because of his vocal criticism of Islam.

Meanwhile, Onkelinx announced on Friday that a person thought to have been behind death threats made to Belgian socialist senator Mimount Boussakla had been arrested.

Boussakla, who is of Moroccan origin and is a senator from Antwerp, had been forced into hiding after receiving telephone calls from a person who threatened to kill her "ritually".

[Copyright Expatica 2004]

Subject: Belgian news

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