The Netherlands announced it would open an investigation into statements made by an Islamic Turkish academic, loyal to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, in which he said, “opponents rebelling against Turkish authorities must be killed.”
Ahmet Akgunduz, head of the Islamic University of Rotterdam in Netherlands, had also stated that “enemies of Turkey (supporters of Fethullah Gulen) should be sentenced to death, even if they were pious,” during a telephone interview with Turkish news channel Akit TV, according to Turkish newspaper Zaman.
Akgunduz also cited a Quranic verse asserting that it is permissible to kill enemies of the state.
He added, “what Fethullah Gulen and his movement did on July 15 is an insurgency in the state, therefore they are aggressors according to Islamic Sharia.”
Dutch Education Minister Ingrid van Engelshoven had threatened to withdraw the accreditation of the university that Akgunduz heads. “These are frightening remarks. We are going to have a special committee in order to make what he said clear and to decide how we should comment, but we must wait for the results of the committee’s findings first,” she said.
Zaman newspaper had also said that “Ahmet Akgunduz did not mention the arrests and displacement of more than 60,000 people in Turkey, including women and children, as well as the confiscation of people’s property and companies and media organizations with the absence of legal evidence” under the guise of “suspicion in participating in the failed coup” that Ankara accuses Gulen of heading.
This is not the first time that Akgunduz had stirred up controversy, as he had recently insulted critics of Erdogan and had called Kurds “dogs”.