See update at bottom
The Islamic world has shown again that it cannot tolerate free speech regarding Islam and its prophet. Bat Ye'or has appositely characterized Geert Wilder's recent acquittal as a "Copernican revolution," achieved by a solitary "unarmed man, constantly threatened by death and whose only defense was his courageous and unbending commitment to say the truth."
It is a bitter irony that on the same day Bat Ye'or's essay was published a pathognomonic communiqué was released by foreign ministers of the Islamintern -- the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) -- whose member states were meeting in Astana, Kazakhstan
The communiqué claimed "a number of Dutch politicians" had insulted Islam and its prophet Muhammad, accusing them of the invented "crime" of "Islamophobia."
Turkish OIC Secretary General Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu issued a separate statement condemning -- and threatening Dutch Parliamentarian Geert Wilders:
Wilders has taken a dangerous path, endangering the peace and harmony of civilizations by spreading hate against Islam and Muslims in his own country as well as in other European countries. Insult to Islam and to the honored Prophet of Islam, Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH), has reached a stage that can no longer be tolerated under any pretext, including freedom of speech.
Demonstrating once again that Wilders is a politician of rare courage, he has now challenged his own Dutch Prime Minister, and the Minister of Foreign Affairs to respond appropriately to the statements of the OIC, and Ihsanoglu:
1) Have you seen the intimidating statement of the OIC Secretary General, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, about me and the OIC report "Fourth OIC observatory report on islamophobia" about statements made by various Dutch politicians?
2) Do you agree that the OIC has vastly overstepped the boundaries with these intimidating statements and do you agree with me that a Dutch politician should have the right to criticise Islam and multiculturalism in a public debate, as was confirmed during my political trial by the court decision of June 23rd?
3) Are you prepared to explain to the OIC member countries that criticism of Islam and freedom of speech are essential in a democratic society under the rule of law? If not, why not?
4) Do you share the opinion that criticism, such as that of an organization like the OIC, is hypocrite and despicable given that the OIC in article 24 of its own Cairo Declaration on Human Rights explicitly states that all rights and freedoms are subject to Islamic Shari'ah law? If not, why not?
5) Are you prepared in the short term to distance yourself publicly in strong wordings of this report and of the intimidating statement of the OIC secretary general? If not, why not?
6) Will you make it clear once and for all to the OIC that the Netherlands will not accept to be lectured by an institution such as the OIC which makes human rights subject to the barbaric Shari'ah, and that we will not allow our fundamental freedoms and our freedom of speech to be restricted? If not, why not?
7) Are you prepared to answer these questions this week