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Last Updated: Thursday, 28 February 2008, 11:49 GMT
Dutch Islam film 'nearly ready'
Geert Wilders. File photo
Mr Wilders is the leader of the Dutch Freedom Party
Far-right Dutch MP Geert Wilders has said that this week he will finish a film about Islam which has already triggered Muslim outrage.

Mr Wilders said he was determined to release the film despite government warnings that this would damage Dutch political and economic interests.

Mr Wilders says the film is about the Koran, without giving details.

In the past, he has called for the Koran to be banned and likened it to Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf.

The project has already been condemned by several Muslim countries, including Iran and Pakistan.

'Death threats'

"It is very good news. the film will definitely be finished this week, that is to say before 1 March," Mr Wilders told Reuters.

Protester holds poster calling Mr Wilders. File photo
Protesters and politicians are concerned about Mr Wilders' film

The lawmaker said he expected that his 15-minute work would then be shown in the Netherlands in March and also released on the internet.

On Wednesday, the Dutch justice and foreign ministers discussed the issue with Mr Wilders, urging him to drop the project.

The ministers expressed concerns over the damage the film could unleash politically, economically and for Dutch businesses and individuals living abroad.

Last month, Mr Wilders said the Dutch authorities had let him know that he may have to leave the country for his own safety amid reports of death threats to him from Islamic militants.

'Inspiration for murder'

Mr Wilders' film is entitled Fitna, an Arabic word used to describe strife or discord, usually religious.

According to a Dutch daily which has seen some of the footage, the film has the Koran opening.

Inside the pages of the book are shown images of atrocities in Muslim countries that the filmmaker thinks are inspired by verses of the Koran.

Mr Wilders has said his film will show how the Koran is "an inspiration for intolerance, murder and terror".

Van Gogh murder

Mr Wilders leads the Freedom Party, which has nine seats in the Dutch parliament.

Dutch film maker Theo van Gogh
Van Gogh was killed by a radical Islamist over his film Submission

He says Dutch culture is superior to what he describes as a retarded Islamic culture and believes immigrants must assimilate by getting rid of what he calls the intolerant and fascist parts of the Koran.

Mr Wilders has had police protection since Dutch director Theo Van Gogh was killed by a radical Islamist in 2004.

Mr Van Gogh's film Submission included verses from the Koran shown against a naked female body.

As well as the killing of Mr Van Gogh, Dutch politicians are mindful of the widespread protests by Muslims that followed the publication of cartoons satirising the Prophet Muhammad in newspapers in Denmark and other European countries in 2006.

SEE ALSO
Dutch Muslims condemn MP's film
24 Jan 08 |  Europe
Dutch MP warned over Islam film
23 Jan 08 |  Europe
Geert Wilders
22 Mar 06 |  Hardtalk
Van Gogh killer jailed for life
26 Jul 05 |  Europe
Life of slain Dutch film-maker
02 Nov 04 |  Entertainment
Sweden cartoonist gets protection
17 Sep 07 |  Middle East



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