A Czech politician has called for people to walk their pigs near mosques as an act of protest against Muslims in the country, insisting that his remarks were not Islamophobic or xenophobic.
Tomio Okamura, a Czech politician of Moravian, Japanese and Korean descent and head of the far-right opposition party Dawn of Direct Democracy, published a post on Facebook over the weekend in which he instructed Czechs on how to “protect [our] democratic way of life and to protect the heritage of our ancestors before Islam.”
His suggestions included having people to walk their dogs and pigs in Muslim neighborhoods and near places of worship, lead homeless people into the mosques and not buy food from Muslim vendors or goods from Muslim shops.
In the very long note posted Saturday, Okamura said he was calling on Czechs to “make it clear [to Muslims] that our hospitality has its limits,” and to “remind them” that they are free to leave the Czech Republic any time.
“Keep in mind the fundamental truth that they have no tolerance for us and they are here as guests. So I have no moral obligation to be tolerant and generous to them !!” he wrote.
Okamura said “external manifestations of Islam” should be banned in the country as well as the ritual slaughter of animals for halal meat. He also made reference to the “clash of civilizations” and slammed the “naive multiculturalism” in Europe.
The far-right politician said he consulted with his lawyers before publishing the post. “We’ve discussed the text with our defense lawyers. I don’t want to step on thin ice,” he told the website iDnes.cz
In the interview, Okamura said his statements were neither intolerant or provocative.
The Dawn of Direct Democracy was founded in May 2013 by Okamura and gained 14 seats out of 200 in the Czech Chamber of Deputies for the first time in the October 2013 elections. With 6.88 percent of the vote, it is one of the two smallest parties in the chamber.