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Geert Wilders 'will disappoint his followers' says estranged brother


Netherlands

Geert Wilders 'will disappoint his followers' says estranged brother

Paul Wilders, brother of Geert, spoke to Euronews correspondent James Franey about his estranged sibling.

James Franey, Euronews: “Paul Wilders, elder brother of Geert Wilders, thank you very much for being with us. First question, if I may, could you please tell us what your brother was like as a person when he was growing up?”

Paul Wilders: “He has been a little spoiled, a little spoiled brat. He lived like most young guys do up til his 18th birthday when he left for Israel. After he returned, he went to work for social service, experienced that there was a lot of bureaucracy and from that moment on he decided: I really do want to make difference.”

James Franey, Euronews: “And when did he start expressing these views about Islam? I mean when did you notice this shift?”

Paul Wilders: “He saw a gap politically. He was a fierce opponent of Turkey at that moment and jumped into the gap with quite a lot of success. He has been the person in the Netherlands who stood up in a way quite extreme, providing easy solutions for difficult problems that people where looking for.”

James Franey, Euronews: “What kind of price have you all had to pay for this with having the name that you do in this country?”

Paul Wilders: “My family has been threatened, I have been threatened. My life was at stake at moments. I’ve been bullied. I got phone calls all the time. Not the pleasant ones. So for me it did have an impact.”

James Franey, Euronews: “When was the last time you and your family saw your brother and what were you doing?”

Paul Wilders: “My mother’s birthday, that was the last time, until I spoke up last december [against him], after that he did cut me off. I took into account it could happen knowing the way he is. I sincerely did hope it didn’t turned out that way. So I’m not happy with it. It’s not up to me to decide for him.”

James Franey, Euronews: “Do you think your brother’s popularity will last or will it fade away?”

Paul Wilders: “Most of the things he does propose are that extreme, laws will have to be changed and that will take years in the Netherlands. So he will disappoint his followers and voters [as well]. He can’t afford that. So in the end, whatever the outcome of the elections, I do believe, he will take the first way out, blame the others.”