A Thoughtful, Analytical Approach to NGO Security

Imminent Threat: Potential for Violent Backlash over Anti-Qur'an Film

Although Geert Wilders, the leader of the Dutch Freedom Party, has agreed to delay the release of his controversial anti-Qur'an short film the potential for a violent backlash remains. The pending release of the film has led to fears of a repeat of the worldwide Prophet Mohammad cartoon riots in 2006.

Wilders says his short will show that the Qur'an is "a source of inspiration for intolerance, murder and terror." Little else is known about the contents of the yet to be viewed video leading some to speculate that it may contain deliberately provocative acts.

NGO’s working in Islamic countries or in countries with significant Muslim communities should review their exposure to the risk of a violent backlash. Organizations that might be labelled as “Western”, “Christian”, “Dutch” or “Israeli” are especially vulnerable. Security plans should include responses for civil disobedience, demonstrations, and riots. With luck cooler heads will prevail and the plans won’t be needed but, as always, it is better to be prepared.

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This work by Kevin Toomer is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.5 Canada License.
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