In the weeks before parliamentary elections in the Netherlands, commentators were saying that immigration issues were not really on the political radar. It seems many voters, however, saw things very differently. The strong support for anti-immigration leader Geert Wilders shows that concern about Muslim integration in the Netherlands is a real one. He attacked his rivals for not addressing what he called “the further islamisation” of the country.
The country had been rocked by the 2002 murder of an anti-immigration politician and the killing two years ago of a filmmaker critical of Islam. During campaigning, the major parties largely steered clear of the immigration debate, deciding instead to focus on the economy, pensions and healthcare.