Keep Mohammed B. in isolation, MPs demand

14th July 2005, Comments 0 comments

14 July 2005AMSTERDAM — A large majority in the Dutch parliament is demanding that Mohammed B. to be kept in isolation if he is convicted and jailed for murdering Theo van Gogh.

14 July 2005

AMSTERDAM — A large majority in the Dutch parliament is demanding that Mohammed B. to be kept in isolation if he is convicted and jailed for murdering Theo van Gogh.

MPs are worried he will recruit other prisoners to Islamic terrorism if he is allowed contact with the rest of the prison population.

It seems very likely B. will be convicted and will receive a lengthy sentence when the  three-judge panel that presided over his trial delivers its ruling on 26 July. The prosecution demanded B. be jailed for life.

A 27-year-old Amsterdammer of Moroccan descent, B. took full responsibility for the murder and expressed absolutely no remorse for shooting and stabbing Van Gogh and cutting his throat in Amsterdam on 2 November last year.

Parliamentarians of the three government parties — the CDA, VVD and D66 — drew support from the Labour Party (PvdA) and Independent right-wing MP Geert Wilders with the call to keep B. away from other prisoners.

"On the left and right of the political spectrum we have to take a stand given that he could continue his recruitment drive for Jihad-fighters for a new network. Everything [to counter this] is therefore open to discussion," VVD MP Frans Weekers said.

The measures suggested in parliament include ensuring that he is not permitted to mix with other prisoners when exercising in the free air, banning all contact with other prisoners and total control of his access to internet, the telephone and the post.

Newspaper 'De Telegraaf' reported PvdA parliamentarian Aleid Wolfsen suggested that if it is not possible to hold B. in isolation in an ordinary prison, he could be sent to the extra security unit (EBI) in Vught.

MPs started considering these options after anti-terrorism experts warned that B. would most likely remain committed to Islamic extremism and would try to recruit others to his cause.

D66 MP Lousewies van der Laan has suggested leading Muslim clerics should be sent to explain to B. that his ideas have nothing to do with Islam.

News agency ANP reported on Thursday that Justice Minister Piet Hein Donner is taking the concerns seriously and is investigating how B. can be prevented from spreading his radical ideology. 

During B.'s trial earlier this week, it emerged that he had tried to convince two fellow inmates in the Pieter Baan assessment centre to embrace his version of radical Islam. The management of the centre believed he wanted to recruit them to take part in terrorism.

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2005]

Subject: Dutch news

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