Dutch anti-Islam lawmaker cancels blasphemous caricatures contest

Dutch anti-Islam lawmaker cancels blasphemous caricatures contest

Dutch anti-Islam lawmaker cancels blasphemous caricatures contest

Thousands of hard-line Islamists angered over a far-right Dutch lawmaker's plans to hold a Prophet Muhammad cartoon contest marched toward Pakistan's capital Thursday after police briefly stopped them because of security reasons.

"People's safety is more important", Wilders, 54, wrote on Facebook.

"To avoid the risk of victims of Islamic violence, I have decided not to let the cartoon contest go ahead", Wilders said in a written statement.

The contest was to have been held at the tightly guarded offices of his Party for Freedom in the Dutch parliament building.

PM Khan also said that after bringing all Muslims on the same page, a protest would be recorded against the handful of people who deliberately hurt the religious sentiments of the Muslims, and added that Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi had already started contacting his counterparts across the Muslim world in this regard.

Physical depictions of Allah or the prophet, even positive ones, are considered blasphemous under Islam and are forbidden.

Pakistani cricketer-turned-politician and head of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf Imran Khan, r ight, speaks with his party spokesperson Fawad Chaudhry before presenting their party manifesto for the forthcoming general election in Islamabad on July 9, 2018.

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The protesters refused demands from authorities to confine their rally to the eastern city of Lahore, where it began.

The same party also organized a huge protest in Islamabad in front of the Dutch Embassy last week.

"Islam showed its true face once again with death threats, fatwas and violence", Wilders said as he commented on his decision on Twitter.

Earlier this week, the Dutch police arrested a 26-year-old man suspected of threatening to attack Mr. The organizers of street protests in Pakistan had called on Islamabad to break off diplomatic relations with the Netherlands over the event. He is accused of preparing to commit a murder and inciting with terrorist intent, among other crimes.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte however has distanced his government from the cartoon competition, saying it was not a government initiative.

In a video message, the premier said that he would move the Organisation of Islamic Countries (OIC) in an effort to raise the issue of blasphemous caricatures in the United Nations (UN).

Wilders in June announced plans to stage a cartoon competition in parliament later this year to draw the Prophet Mohammed.

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