MSTERDAM, Netherlands – Arsonists and vandals angered over the alleged
Muslim-inspired slaying of a controversial Dutch filmmaker have conducted a
series of attacks on Islamic targets, including attempts to burn down two
mosques, Dutch media reported Sunday.
Eight suspected Islamic extremists have been arrested in connection with
Tuesday’s slaying of Theo van Gogh, who earlier this year released a film
critical of Islam’s treatment of women. Among those arrested was the
alleged 26-year-old killer, identified only as Mohammed B.
Though mainstream Muslim groups condemned the killing, it has caused an
outpouring of anger in the Netherlands.
Vandals threw red paint Saturday night on an Amsterdam center that assists
immigrants, many of them Muslim. Abdou Menebhi, director of the Emcemo
center, several blocks from the spot where Van Gogh was killed, told AT5
television he “assumed (the vandalism) was done by a racist group of some
In the town of Huizen, police arrested two men allegedly trying to start a
fire at the An-Nasr mosque Friday night, the national news service NOS
reported. A mosque in the city of Breda sustained minor fire damage in
another reported arson attempt.
Earlier this week, a small fire was set at a mosque in Utrecht, police
said, and a pig’s head was left in a plastic bag outside a mosque in
NOS reported Sunday that pamphlets with the image of a pig and a slur
against Muslims were circulating in Rotterdam.
Van Gogh, a distant relative of the famous painter Vincent van Gogh,
released “Submission” in August. The film was criticized as insensitive by
some Muslim groups.
On Tuesday, Van Gogh was shot while riding his bicycle and then stabbed and
had his throat cut. His killer left a 5-page note quoting from the Quran
and threatening more attacks.
Of the eight suspects arrested, six remain in detention for the killing,
including Mohammed B.
Judges ordered two suspects released Friday for lack of evidence, a
decision prosecutors said they will appeal