Amsterdam stabber says Islam is insulted in the Netherlands

Prosecutors say Afghan asylum-seeker accused of stabbing two Americans in Amsterdam believes that Islam is insulted in the Netherlands.

Ben Ariel,

Amsterdam central train station
Amsterdam central train station
iStock

An Afghan asylum-seeker accused of stabbing two Americans in Amsterdam last week believes that Islam is insulted in the Netherlands, Dutch prosecutors said Monday, according to The Associated Press.

The 19-year-old suspect is accused of stabbing the 38-year-old tourists in an unprovoked attack after he arrived at Amsterdam's Central Station on an international train.

Dutch police said on Saturday the stabbing incident was a terror attack.

The American men were not targeted because of their nationality, which the alleged attacker did not know, prosecutors said. The suspect's grievance was with the European country where the assault took place, they said in a written statement.

"It is apparent from his statements that he believes that in the Netherlands, the Prophet Mohammed, the Quran, Islam and Allah are repeatedly insulted," prosecutors said, according to AP.

They added that the young Afghan man specifically mentioned Dutch lawmaker Geert Wilders, who is well known for his fierce anti-Islam rhetoric which 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.

Just last week, Wilders announced he had cancelled a planned contest inviting people to submit a cartoon of the Prophet Mohammed following death threats.

"From the suspect's statements so far, it is clear the man had a terrorist motive ... and that he traveled to the Netherlands for that reason," the prosecutors' said.

Earlier Monday, German authorities said the man had applied for asylum in Germany and was not considered a security threat there.

The Dutch prosecutors added that there was so far no indication the suspect, identified as Jawed S. under local privacy rules, was working with anyone else.

Police shot him after the stabbings, and he remains in a hospital. An investigating judge held a closed-door hearing there Monday and ordered him held for two more weeks on suspicion of assaulting the Americans "with a terrorist motive."

Following the stabbing attack, the Netherlands said its threat level will remain at four on a scale that tops out at five.


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