Prosecutors examine city councillor’s comments as possible incitement against an ethnic group
True Finns’ Freddy Van Wonterghem saw “positive side” to death of flogged Saudi girl
Freddy van Wontergehm
Prosecutors are examining comments made by a member of the City Council of Kotka to determine if there might be cause for an indictment of incitement against an ethnic group.
In a comment written on the Uusi Suomi website on Sunday on the death of a teenage girl in Saudi Arabia after she had been flogged, Councillor Freddy Van Wonterghem (True Finn) wrote:
“From my point of view, the Saudis can do what they please in their own country – it is not our concern. What can be seen as a positive matter is that whenever a Muslim girl is killed, we lose someone who might potentially give birth of Muslims.”
State Prosecutor Mika Illman says that the office of the Prosecutor General will first ascertain if police are already investigating the matter. If not, it is possible that a request will be made to the police for an investigation.
The thrust of the investigation would be whether or not the comment amounts to the endorsement of killing members of a certain ethnic group.
Defending his comment, Freddy Van Wonterghem said:
“The idea was that I cannot find anything else positive [in the flogging], if I try to look very far. Well, naturally they get justice according to their law, but I don’t understand why we should approve of it”, Van Wontgerhem said to Helsingin Sanomat.
But isn’t it a problem to express approval for killing a person?
“It depends on how you look at it. Let’s say that theoretically it can be seen positive from the point of view of the population explosion, but only very theoretically. The fewer potential people there are giving birth, the less the population will grow. But it is very theoretical”, Van Wonterghem says.
MP Jari Lindström, the chairman of the Kymi district organization of the True Finns, distanced himself from Van Wonterghem’s views.
“It is his very own personal opinion. I would not go and write something like that, but Freddy writes what he wants to. It is not our shared view”, Lindström says.
Previously in HS International Edition:
True Finns renounce racism, discrimination, and favouritism (26.5.2011)
Timo Soini reprimands new MP (20.4.2011)
Court finds City Council member guilty of insulting religion (9.9.2009)