18 February 2012
Islamic scholar Haitham al-Haddad participated in a public debate in Amsterdam cultural center De Balie following the decision by Amsterdam’s Vrij Universiteit (VU) to cancel his planned appearance. The controversial cleric had been invited to the VU by the Islamic Students’ Association, but the event was cancelled following protests from MPs.
After the VU cancelled the initial event, al-Haddad appeared instead in a public conversation at cultural organization De Balie, at a round table including MP Tofik Dibi (Green Left) and prominent journalist Kustaw Bessems, and others. During the debate al-Haddad reaffirmed the extreme sentiments upon which his controversial reputation is based, including commenting during the question period that apostates should be killed in a Muslim country. Dutch media coverage of the event included discussion regarding whether or not al-Haddad had made inflammatory and anti-Semitic statements on public record.
The full debate is available on YouTube. See also previous coverage on the cancellation of the VU debate.