BFP Exclusive: Fethullah Gulen’s New Controversy in the Netherlands

By Peter Edel

In no country has the Fethullah Gülen movement become more of a political issue than in The Netherlands. A television item in 2008 resulted in questions in parliament to the Minister of Social Affairs about a possible negative influence by the movement on the integration of Turks in Dutch society. Subsequently the movement was investigated by the Dutch intelligence organization AIVD. The AIVD did not recognize a threat to Dutch society.

Later on the government assigned academician Martin van Bruinessen to write a report on the activities of the Gülen movement in The Netherlands. Van Bruinessen presented much relevant information, but in his conclusion he considered that the movement did not present a danger to integration. The minister went along with this conclusion, resulting in the continuation of subsidies by the government for the Gülen movement. Many disagreed with this position. Probably to limit further suspicion the Gülen movement announced the closure of dormitory schools, which were especially seen as a threat to integration. [Read more...]