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petek, 3 decembra, 2021

Officials make arrests for threats against Rotterdam school and teacher

A teacher at a Catholic school in Oosterflank near Rotterdam, the Netherlands, was forced into hiding after receiving threats for displaying a cartoon of Islamic terror in a classroom. The threats came after a commemoration was held at the school in memory of the recently brutally murdered French teacher, Samuel Paty. Dutch authorities arrested one person in the case on Friday and two more on Saturday.

It was reported earlier this week that a teacher at a Catholic secondary school near Rotterdam, the Netherlands, was forced to suspend his teaching activity and go hiding after some students objected to a cartoon drawing hanging on his classroom wall for several years. The caricature was drawn by cartoonist Joep Bertram about the attack on satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo, depicting a decapitated man in a Charlie Hebdo shirt sticking his tongue out at the jihadi who beheaded him.

The threatened teacher had previously told the students that the picture was not a depiction of Islam’s Prophet Muhammad.

The Emmaus College made an announcement over the intercom on Monday to express sympathy for Samuel Paty, the French teacher who was brutally beheaded by an Islamic extremist. As is well known, the man was beheaded for showing caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad to his class in a lesson about free speech.

After the commemoration, several students demanded that the Dutch teacher remove Joep Bertrams’s caricature from the classroom wall, and they also posted pictures of the cartoon on social media attracting some angry attention and threats to both the institution and the teacher.

On Friday, Rotterdam police arrested, and later released, a girl on suspicion she posted a message on social media that “incited others to commit crimes” directed at the school and the teacher. On Saturday, two more suspects active in social media were caught by police: a 17-year-old boy from Amsterdam and an 18-year-old one from Rotterdam, who are suspected of threats and incitement.

Police said earlier that they were “taking the matter very seriously” and took visible and invisible measures to protect the teacher. The Dutch portal NRC Handelsblad wrote that several teachers at the school indicated that they did not feel safe in the institution.

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