A letter left on the body of a Dutch film-maker murdered in Amsterdam contained death threats against a Dutch politician and was signed by an unknown group, the justice minister said tonight.
Dutch authorities have arrested nine suspects, all believed to be radical Islamists, in connection with Tuesday”s shooting and stabbing of Theo van Gogh.
Authorities have said they are investigating possible links between the suspects and foreign terrorist groups, including those responsible for the Casablanca bombings in May last year.
Justice Minister Piet Hein Donner said a letter pinned by the killer to Van Gogh’s body with a knife was “a direct warning” to Dutch MP Ayaan Hirsi Ali.
Ali wrote the script of a film Van Gogh made criticising the treatment of women under Islam, and Van Gogh received death threats after the film was released in August.
Donner said the way the five-page letter “was presented indicates that it is not from one person, but a movement”.
The letter, which was addressed to Ali and signed “Saifu Deen al Muwahhied,” said: “I know definitely that you, Hirsi Ali, will go down.”
Somali-born Ali has frequently outraged fellow Muslims by criticising Islamic customs and the failure of Muslim families to adopt Dutch ways. She remains under police protection.
The letter threatened to bring down “non-believers”, saying “I know definitely that America will crumble.”
It was typed in Dutch, with a smattering of Koranic verses written in Arabic and translated into Dutch.