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01 June 2011

Amsterdam Denies Its Integration Advisor Supports Terrorists

The personal assistant to Fatima Elatik, the president of the Oost (East) district council of Amsterdam, applauded the murder of Theo van Gogh. Despite this, the municipality denies he is a radical Muslim

Fatima Elatik is the president of Oost on behalf of Labour (PvdA). Her personal assistant is Mohamed Azahaf. This man has also since 2009 been the district council's project leader on 'alienation and polarisation'.

Journalist and blogger Carel Brendel discovered that at the time of the murder of Islam critic Theo van Gogh, Azahaf expressed jubilation about this terrorist act. On the Internet, he writes on a Moroccan forum: "Yippee, how happy I am today, oh so happy I have never before been. Hip hip hooray, one gone and the second still to go". He was apparently referring here to then MP Ayaan Hirsi Ali.

Azahaf was at the time a staff member of a youth centre in Amsterdam, Argan. In 2009, he became a policy staff member of Elatik's, according to Brendel. "Some explanation is needed of the question of why Elatik attracted this radical of all people as her personal assistant," he concludes.

In a press statement, Oost district council denies everything. "Azahaf is a bridge-builder," proclaims the statement's headline. While he acknowledges that he "had made a number of statements in those times which he now no longer supports", "the quotations ascribed to him by Carel Brendel "are taken out of context or not true."

But Brendel says that nothing is taken out of context. He simply tracked down literal quotes which are indisputably from the 'bridge-builder', he says. "It is of course possible that Azahaf meanwhile regrets his remarks about Osama bin Laden and Theo van Gogh. But he did make them."

One day before the murder of Van Gogh in November 2004, Azahaf took part in an internet discussion about Osama bin Laden. He wrote: "A true Muslim, a real fighter, an example for the Muslims. May Allah be gracious to him and prepare a place for him in the beautiful and wonderful paradise."

District council Oost says in its statement: "Azahaf is of great importance as a bridge-builder who works on fostering mutual understanding between Muslims and non-Muslims. In his behaviour, he actually encourages opposition to radicalisation and entering into the dialogue in a multicultural society. (...) Bloggers and columnists may permit themselves the appropriate freedoms. What is objectionable is that assumptions are more or less presented as facts




16:54 Posted in EUROPE | Permalink | Comments (0) |  Facebook |

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