Dutch researcher who exposed anti-Semitism hid out based on mayor’s advice


THE HAGUE (JTA) – A Dutch-Turkish researcher who exposed anti-Semitism among Muslims went into hiding, following the advice of a Dutch mayor.

Mehmet Sahin left his home for several days last month after being advised by Pauline Krikke, the mayor of the eastern city of Arnhem, according to De Telegraaf daily.

Sahin, a researcher at Amsterdam’s Vrije Universiteit, said he received death threats after a Dutch television show in February aired filmed interviews he conducted with Dutch-Turkish youths who made anti-Semitic statements.

One interviewee said, “I am more than pleased with what Hitler did to the Jews.” Another said, “I hate Jews, period. Nothing you will do will make me change my mind.”

A spokesperson for Arnhem said Krikke advised Sahin "to temporarily stay elsewhere to ensure peace for himself and for others.”

The television channel NTR reported that Sahin checked into a nearby hotel with his wife and two children. Sahin told NTR he has received death threats in emails and does not feel safe in his neighborhood. He has since returned home, according to NTR.

Last month, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte announced a number of measures to be taken in cooperation with the Center for Information and Documentation on Israel, or CIDI. They include plans “to discuss anti-Semitism with young people,” Rutte wrote in his reply to the Simon Wiesenthal Center, which had written to the prime minister to express the center’s concern.

“We will also begin discussions with the Turkish Community Advisory Association on anti-Semitism,” Rutte wrote, adding, “As I write, there are also several surveys being conducted to deepen our understanding of the nature and extent of anti-Semitism in the Netherlands.”

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