Moderate Dutch Muslims on Thursday blasted a plan by anti-Islam lawmaker Geert Wilders to broadcast cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed on national television, The Associated Press (AP) reported.
The Muslims branded Wilders’ plan a “provocation”, according to the report.
Wilders had on Wednesday announced his plan to use airtime granted to political parties to show cartoons from a contest in Texas last month that was targeted by two armed attackers.
Wilders spoke at the contest in Garland, but left before the foiled attack in which both gunmen were shot dead.
His anti-Islam rhetoric has in the past sparked outrage around the Muslim world and prompted death threats that have led to him living under round-the-clock protection, noted AP.
Yassin Elforkani, a spokesman of the Contact Group for Muslims and Government, told AP that people are growing accustomed to Wilders.
"It is provocation from Mr. Wilders that we have been used to for years," Elforkani said in a telephone interview.
Wilders denied he was being provocative for the sake of it, telling AP in an emailed reaction that he wants to show the cartoons to support freedom of expressions and demonstrate to extremists that their violence won't silence him.
"Never capitulate. Never give in to fear," he wrote. "Always continue with more power and conviction."
Several weeks ago it was revealed that Wilders, who heads the Party for Freedom (PVV), had been the target of a jihadist assassination attempt.
It was revealed in court that Mohammed A., who is suspected of returning from jihad in Syria to conduct attacks, told others that he planned to attack Wilders.