The fact that Saudi journalist Hamza Kashgari faces the death penalty for posting “blasphemous” comments on Twitter, and the opening of a Dutch web site to collect complaints against central and east Europeans, were criticized as affronts to universal and EU values by President Martin Schulz at the opening of the Strasbourg plenary session.
Saudi journalist Hamza Kashgari faces the death penalty for posting allegedly blasphemous comments on Twitter, noted Mr Schulz, who promised “to do everything possible to stop this happening”, and reiterated Parliament’s commitment to the universal value of freedom of expression.
Discriminatory Dutch web site
Mr Schulz noted complaints from many MEPs that the Dutch Freedom Party (PVV) had opened a web site to collect anonymous complaints about migrant workers from central and eastern Europe living in the Netherlands. The site had also been criticized by Justice Commissioner Viviane Reding, he added.
Although he had not seen the site himself, he promised to investigate the matter further, and to raise it with the Dutch Prime Minister at their meeting early in March.