Geert Wilders' trial to go ahead after objections brushed aside
Mar 16, 2011, 14:17 GMT
Dutch politician Geert Wilders (R) stands as he awaits the start of his trial for hate speech, incitement to discrimination and group insulting in the court of Amsterdam, The Netherlands, on 16 March. On left is Wilders\' lawyer Abraham Moszkowicz. Wilders had returned to court on 14 March where new judges will decide how his trial for alleged hate speech should continue. A previous trial in October 2010 was abandoned as the case was considered to weak and senior court officials ruled several irregularities in the proceedings could be deemed prejudicial. EPA/MARCEL ANTONISSE/POOL
Amsterdam - Dutch politician Geert Wilders' trial on charges of hate speech can go ahead after objections were brushed aside by the Public Prosecutor, Dutch news agency ANP reported Wednesday.
The trial had been adjourned on Monday after the lawyer of the populist anti-Islam politician questioned the partiality of the judges and claimed the court was 'not qualified'.
Wilders' lawyer Bram Moszkowicz had argued that his client was being accused of 'far more than was included in the formal charges, which mention hatemongering, discrimination and insulting a section of the population (muslims)'.
A second objection, that the Amsterdam court was not qualified to try him in this case, was rejected as the alleged offences were committed in Amsterdam.
This is Wilders' second trial over allegations that he incited hatred of Muslims.
A previous trial on the same charges collapsed in October after a judicial review found the judges to be biased.
The head of the populist Party for Freedom (PVV) is accused of discrimination and incitement. The charges are based on interviews he gave in which he described Islam as a fascist ideology and compared the Koran to Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf.
Wilders' party backs but is not formally part of the current minority coalition government of Christian Democrats and Liberals. Author: Fernando Heller, Thomas Burmeister
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