The trial of Geert Wilders, the leader of the Dutch Party for Freedom (Partij voor de Vrijheid, PVV), got underway late last month in a secure courtroom at Schiphol Airport.
Today Mr. Wilders announced that he will no longer appear personally in any further courtroom sessions during his trial. He decided that he has better things to do with his time than sit through the endless hours of a judicial farce with a predetermined outcome.
The following video is the English-language version of Geert Wilders’ statement:
Below is the full text of his statement:
No-one will silence me
Next Monday, the trial against freedom of speech begins.
Against a politician who says what the politically correct elite does not want to hear.
It is a travesty that I have to stand trial because I spoke about fewer Moroccans.
It is my right and my duty as a politician to speak about the problems in our country.
Because The Netherlands has a huge problem with Moroccans.
Moroccans are overrepresented in crime and welfare dependency.
More than three-quarters of Dutch jihadists in Syria are Moroccan.
Hence, I have said nothing wrong.
Millions of Dutch citizens (43% of the population) want fewer Moroccans.
Not because they despise all Moroccans or want all Moroccans out of the country, but because they are sick and tired of the nuisance and terror caused by so many Moroccans.
Just like me.
If speaking about this is punishable, then The Netherlands are no longer a free country.
But a dictatorship.
This trial is a political trial, in which I refuse to cooperate. Political statements should be discussed in Parliament and not in court. There is also a double standard. Prime Minister Rutte said that Turks should get lost. Labour leader Samsom said that Moroccan youths have a monopoly on ethnic trouble. Labour chairman Spekman said that Moroccans should be humiliated. Labour alderman Oudkerk even spoke about f***ing Moroccans. They are allowed to say it all and are not being prosecuted. Rightly so. But one wants to have me silenced by the court.
The Netherlands belong to us.
This is our country and I will not be silenced.
Not by Muslim terrorists who have been threatening me for twelve years now.
Not by political opponents who decry me.
And not by the public prosecutor or the judiciary.
I will always keep expressing my opinion — on behalf of millions of Dutch citizens — whatever the consequences. No-one will stop me.
For we, Dutch, are free and fearless and we will never be silent. Never.
I have, therefore, decided not to attend this political trial.
I will conduct political discussions in the place where the political debate belongs: in our Parliament. And not in court. I entrust the legal aspects of the case to Mr. Knoops, the best lawyer in The Netherlands. He will defend my case next Monday and all the session days.
I wish him every success.
And I’m going to work. For my voters and for The Netherlands. Our Netherlands.