The court in The Hague has rejected the Farmers Defense Force’s complaints about politician Sigrid Kaag. FDF believed that Kaag had made unlawful statements in the media and demanded 30,000 euros in intangible compensation. The district court dismissed the claims on Wednesday.
FDF complained about statements by D66’er Kaag in the TV program news hour, in a news agency publication AP and in a LinkedIn message. At the beginning of this year, Kaag said in Nieuwsuur that FDF was guilty of or was involved in knocking down fences and threatening journalists.
According to the organization, this harms her honor and good name. The Subdistrict Court has ruled that Kaag’s statement has sufficient factual basis and is therefore not unlawful.
“It is certain that on 1 and 16 October 2019, protesting farmers drove around fences,” the judge said. “It is also established that journalists have said that they feel threatened by members of the Farmers Defense Force. The protest organization Farmers Defense Force was (co-)organizer of the protests and has called for people to participate in those protests with strong language. Farmers Defense Force has not publicly distanced itself from grassroots behavior.”
The judge also takes into account that the statements were made in the public debate. “A politician is also entitled to a large degree of freedom, even outside the parliamentary debate, when it comes to conducting the social debate and thereby denouncing abuses.”
In the interview with the ANP and in the LinkedIn message, Kaag speaks about ‘farmers’, Farmers Defense Force is not mentioned. “For that reason alone, these statements are not unlawful,” said the judge.
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Farmers Defense Force backs down in lawsuit against Kaag | Inland
Source link Farmers Defense Force backs down in lawsuit against Kaag | Inland