News from Western Europe, Monday 13th May 2013

BELGIUM

Translated from Dutch – De Standaard: Officer fired for Muslim extremism. ‘The vessels authorized for municipal employees, Philippe Close (PS), stated that the former clerk at the museums of Brussels refused to shake the hand of Lalieux ‘because his religion forbids him to touch women. The man said he would change. In the future to his behavior does not

“Because we have to be neutral in the administration of the city of Brussels and the staff also should demonstrate courtesy, we decided that the cooperation of the man with the city of Brussels was no longer possible,” said the ship. The City Council decided on 29 April to dismiss the man.’

Vlaams Belang, Open VLD and Green close 2012 with loss. ‘Vlaams Belang, Open VLD and Green closed last year with a loss. This is evident from the accounts of the political parties which Time and The Latest News Saturday posts.

With a loss of almost two million scored Vlaams Belang last year the worst. Public money flowed entirely to propaganda and election expenses and revenues were disappointing. Open VLD then again suffered a loss of more than 600,000 euros. The party has little income, while spending on personnel (1.9 million) among the highest. Green, that relatively many spent in the elections, suffered a slight loss.’

FRANCE

France 24: Topless Femen crash far-right rally in Paris. ‘The breast-flashing and fist-pumping Femen group struck again in Paris on Sunday, interrupting a rally organised by far-right groups to commemorate Saint Joan of Arc in central Paris.

The four feminists appeared topless – a trademark of the Ukraine-based feminist movement – on a rooftop overlooking the equestrian statue of Joan of Arc in Place des Pyramides, where ultra-conservative Catholics, French royalists, skinhead youths, and other groups had gathered around noon.

The women unravelled a two-story high red and black banner reading “Sextermination for Nazism”, while being admonished with cries of “Femen die” and “Femen whores” from the crowds below.

Joan of Arc, considered a French medieval hero, has become an iconic symbol for far-right groups, including the National Front political party. Sunday was the Catholic saint’s feast day.’

RFI: Marine Le Pen says not to forget France’s positive contribution to Africa, despite its connection to slavery. ‘“We are not the only nation to have committed mistakes there”, said Le Pen in an interview on France 3, just two days after the 10 May National Day in Memory of Slavery, Slave Trade and Abolition. She added that there is rarely much talk about the Arab-Muslim slave trade.

Le Pen added that France has contributed positively to Africa through the construction of hospitals, roads, and schools.

“This is something we never talk about. I will say it once again that the socialists, more so on the part of the [ruling] UMP, have a very narrow vision with respect to these countries.” said Le Pen.

She continued on to say that President François Hollande was right in remaining firm in his decision to refuse any retribution for slavery, until a member of the Council of Representatives of Black Associations pointed a finger at the French financial institution, the Caisse des depots (CDC), for having profited from the slave trade.’

GERMANY

Translated from German – Die Welt: Immigrant children’s German has gone from bad to worse. ‘More and more migrant children need after a report in the “Bild” newspaper language support, because their knowledge of German for schools are not enough.

The new numbers occupied by federal and state governments to the language skills of students with an immigrant background, the paper said. The cause lies in the fact that in many immigrant families at home little or no German is spoken.

Maria Böhmer, integration representative of the federal government, the Journal said: “In some countries, almost every second child needs specific language support This is a daunting task, you must be a top priority everywhere…”

If you do not speak German, is only “an onlooker in our country”. Every child should be so good to talk to entry into the German school that it can follow the lessons. “The more important is the language support from the beginning.”‘

I have advocated attacks on foreigners. ’20 years ago, five Turks were killed in an arson attack in Solingen. The ex-neo-Nazi Markus Gartmann was one of the main perpetrators and therefore was in prison. Now he speaks for the first time on the night.’

Reuters: German court rejects bias charge in neo-Nazi trial. ‘A German court rejected on Friday accusations of bias from two defendants in a case involving neo-Nazi racist murders, removing legal hurdles to resumption of the trial.’

ITALY

CNN: Italian soccer match stopped due to racist abuse of Milan’s Balotelli. ‘A leading Italian soccer coach has called for stronger action against racism after a top-level match between AC Milan and Roma was suspended Sunday due to abusive chants by supporters.

Milan striker Mario Balotelli was targeted by visiting fans throughout the match, and referee Gianluca Rocchi called the game to a halt in the second half to warn the crowd via the public address system.’

Video – JN1: Pope canonises hundreds who resisted Islam. ‘Francis has pledged to improve dialogue between Muslim and Catholic leaders, but the canonisation of hundreds of those who resisted converting to Islam could further strain relations between the two faiths. The church ran into controversy several years ago when Pope Benedict delivered an address in Germany in which he a quoted 14th-century Christian emperor who said that the Prophet Muhammad told followers to spread their faith with the sword—a speech that Muslims perceived as equating Islam with violence.’

THE NETHERLANDS

Dutch News: Hofstad terror group grenade thrower released from jail‘Convicted Dutch terrorist Jason Walters, who has spent eight years in jail for throwing a hand grenade at police, has been released after serving two-thirds of his sentence, the public prosecution department confirmed on Saturday.

Muslim convert Walters, who has an American father and Dutch mother, was arrested in 2004 as one of a group of young men said to have formed a terrorist organisation, known by the police as the Hofstad group.

He was convicted of throwing the hand grenade at police while resisting arrest and sentenced to 13 years in jail. That was later reduced slightly on appeal. Walters, who has since rejected Islam, was 19 at the time.

‘It is only logical that he is allowed out on leave,’ Walters’ lawyer Bart Nooitgedagt said in January, when he successfully applied for prison leave. ‘He has rejected his earlier ideology and repeatedly offered his excuses. He is not mad and he knows if he does not come back or misbehaves his release from jail is at risk.”

Translated from Dutch – Volkskrant: Police helped minors Islamic marriage. ‘”The police and Fier Fryslân have not only violated the law, but also promoted the lawlessness of that girl. The risk of marital captivity for her is great, “says Musa, himself of Pakistani descent. “Maybe that girl have agreed to such a marriage, but they do not know what could be the negative consequences. If a man does not agree to a divorce, you will not get rid of him. ‘

Musa believes that Dutch authorities should keep religious commitments. Distant in all cases She says she went to the police. In the presence of all participants in discussion “They did not know that the law was violated.”

A police spokesman Amsterdam confirms that a religious marriage between minors is closed, but denies it actively have mediated. “We have done our job as a strong arm, the girl immediately taken out of school and brought her to the shelter in Friesland.” According to the police, “the chain partners, Fier Fryslân and Youth ‘, the matter thereafter acquired.’

NORWAY

The Independent: Anders Breivik fails in bid to start fascist group from prison. ‘The Norwegian authorities have refused an application by the mass killer, Anders Breivik, to form a fascist organisation from his prison cell, saying he provided them with insufficient paperwork.

Breivik, who killed 77 people in a bombing in Oslo and shooting at a youth camp on Utoya island in 2011, tried to register a political association which listed its aim as the “democratic fascist seizure of power in Norway” and the establishment of an independent state.

But the right-wing extremist only included one signatory – himself – while Norwegian regulations stipulate that an association must be two or more people, the Aftenposten newspaper reported.’

The Nordic Page: Conference on Rightwing Extremism and Hate Crime. ‘Ministry of Foreign Affairs is organizing a two-day international conference on right-wing extremism and hate crimes in Oslo from 14 to 15. May.

The conference will in particular address the new emergence of right wing extremism and hate crimes directed at minorities in Europe.

The aim of the conference is to identify trends, share information on remedies and discuss possible actions against these two problems.’

SPAIN

Hurriyet Daily News: Gibraltar deports Turkish Al-Qaeda suspect. ‘Police in Gibraltar deported to Spain on May 10 a Turkish suspected Al-Qaeda member accused of plotting bombing attacks, who entered the British territory illegally, an official said.

Cengiz Yalçın had been arrested in August in Spain along with two Chechen suspects who the Spanish interior ministry said were Al-Qaeda members plotting an attack in Europe.

The three were released on bail by a judge in Madrid in March pending terrorism charges. Yalcin was arrested in Gibraltar on Wednesday, authorities said.

Spanish media at the time cited police sources saying the three were suspected of plotting to drop explosives on a shopping mall in Gibraltar during the 2012 London Olympics.’

SWITZERLAND

The Local: Maurer apologizes for Holocaust message gaffe. ‘Swiss Federal President Ueli Maurer has apologized for his controversial message on Holocaust Remembrance Day at the end of January.

Maurer told Jewish representatives on Wednesday night that it had not been his intention at all to hush up the “weaknesses and mistakes” of Swiss Second World War policy.

Swiss Jewish organisations had criticized the federal president for his published remarks on the occasion of Holocaust Remembrance Day on January 27th.

Maurer had written that in the dark days of the Second World War Switzerland had remained a land of freedom and rule of law.

It had offered refuge to many persecuted and threatened people. But Jewish groups said at the time he had neglected to mention all the refugees turned away by Switzerland faced certain death.’

On Islam: Integration Important Than Religion. ‘A Swiss federal court has rejected a request from a Muslim girl to be excused from swimming lessons because the teacher was male, saying that integration was more important than religion.

Integration of foreigners is more important than their religious beliefs, the Lausanne-based Federal Court, Switzerland’s highest court, said in its ruling on Friday, May 10 and cited by Swiss Info news agency.
The case was first taken to court when the family of a 14-year-old Muslim girl asked for being exempted from swimming classes.

Though the girl was allowed to cover up under an Islam-conforming burkini, her family objected to allowing their pubescent daughter to swim under the gaze of a male teacher’

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