Mosques seek Twitter ban on Dutch populist Geert Wilders

Geert Wilders said the move to ban his Twitter account was madness. (Reuters)
Updated 06 November 2018
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Mosques seek Twitter ban on Dutch populist Geert Wilders

  • Going to court is the last thing we want to do but if we have to, we’ll do it: TICF lawyer
  • Wilders reacted to the move on Twitter, calling the demand for a ban on his account “madness.”

THE HAGUE: A body representing 144 Turkish mosques in the Netherlands has asked Twitter to block the account of anti-Islam politician Geert Wilders for inciting hatred.
The Turkish Islamic Cultural Federation (TICF) sent the letter on Friday seeking “a permanent ban of the Twitter of Mr. Geert Wilders... due to continuous publications on his Twitter account of messages, images and other content which is a display of hateful conduct.”
It said Wilders’ tweets breached Twitter’s guidelines, adding: “His hate messages are being spread worldwide thanks to the platform and abilities Twitter provides him.”
“We reserve the right to take any legal actions and measures necessary if you will not take action as requested within 21 days after this,” it said.
TICF’s lawyer Ejder Kose told AFP on Monday they would take legal action if nothing was done.
“Going to court is the last thing we want to do but if we have to, we’ll do it,” Kose said.
Kose said many of Wilders’ tweets breached laws in several countries including Tunisia, Morocco, Pakistan and Indonesia.
The far-right leader of the PVV party in August canceled a Prophet Muhammad cartoon contest that had angered many Muslims around the world.
Wilders reacted to the move on Twitter, calling the demand for a ban on his account “madness.”


Trump drops new North Korea sanctions because he ‘likes’ Kim

In this file photo taken on February 27, 2019 US President Donald Trump (L) speaks with North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un during a meeting at the Sofitel Legend Metropole hotel in Hanoi. (AFP)
Updated 23 March 2019
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Trump drops new North Korea sanctions because he ‘likes’ Kim

  • “President Trump likes Chairman Kim and he doesn’t think these sanctions will be necessary,” the president’s spokeswoman, Sarah Sanders, said

WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump on Friday abruptly announced the cancelation of sanctions imposed by his own Treasury Department to tighten international pressure on North Korea.
“It was announced today by the US Treasury that additional large scale Sanctions would be added to those already existing Sanctions on North Korea. I have today ordered the withdrawal of those additional Sanctions!” Trump said in a tweet.
He appeared to be referring to measures unveiled Thursday that targeted two Chinese companies accused of helping North Korea to evade tight international sanctions meant to pressure Pyongyang into ending its nuclear weapons program.
But The Washington Post reported, citing Trump administration officials, that the president’s tweet referenced future sanctions that had not been announced and were scheduled for “the coming days.”
The Thursday sanctions were the first new sign of pressure since talks between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un broke down in Hanoi less than a month ago.
However, Trump, who has previously spoken of “love” for the totalitarian leader, appears to retain hope that his strong personal relationship will bear fruit.
“President Trump likes Chairman Kim and he doesn’t think these sanctions will be necessary,” the president’s spokeswoman, Sarah Sanders, said.
Adam Schiff, a Democrat who heads the intelligence committee in the House of Representatives, blasted Trump for canceling sanctions “imposed only yesterday and championed by his own national security adviser, because he ‘loves’ Kim.”
“Foolish naivete is dangerous enough. Gross incompetence and disarray in the White House make it even worse,” Schiff tweeted.
On Thursday, Trump national security adviser John Bolton had tweeted that the sanctions were meant to put an end to “illicit shipping practices” by North Korea.
“Everyone should take notice and review their own activities to ensure they are not involved in North Korea’s sanctions evasion,” he said.
China complained, saying that it did enforce all UN resolutions and opposed “any country imposing unilateral sanctions and taking long-arm jurisdiction against any Chinese entity according to their own domestic laws.”
This was Trump’s second major, unexpected foreign policy announcement by Twitter in two days.
On Thursday, he sent a tweet reversing decades of US policy and pledged to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the hotly contested Golan Heights border area with Syria.