Turkish Islamic group seeks Twitter ban for anti-Muslim politician

A group of Dutch Turks have urged Twitter to permanently ban the firebrand, anti-Islam politician Geert Wilders for inciting hatred, Deutsche Welle reported. 

The Turkish Islamic Cultural Federation (TICF), which represents 144 Turkish mosques in The Netherlands, sent a letter on Friday requesting "a permanent ban of the Twitter account of Mr Geert Wilders," leader of the far-right Freedom Party. The TICF said that "his hate messages are being spread worldwide."

In a September 2017 tweet, Wilders called Prophet Muhammad a "paedophile, mass murderer, terrorist and madman." He responded to the TICF request on Twitter, calling it "madness." 

Last year, Wilders called for a ban on Turkish political campaign rallies in the Netherlands and in a televised debate demanded the expulsion of the Turkish ambassador. In response, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan warned that Dutch offenders would "pay the price".

TICF, founded in 1979, works closely with the Dutch arm of Turkey's Directorate of Religious Affairs, which supplies imams for its 144 mosques. The TICF gave Twitter 21 days to comply before it said it would "take any legal actions and measures necessary".

TICF lawyer Ejder Köse said Wilders' tweets break laws in many countries, from Tunisia to Indonesia, and that the group would take legal action if nothing is done. "Going to court is the last thing we want to do but if we have to, we’ll do it," he said.