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Dutch lawmaker Wilders gaining support amid migrant crisis

Netherlands PoliticsSPIJKENISSE, Netherlands (AP) -The Dutch debate on refugees and asylum seekers has come to this: Firebrand lawmaker Geert Wilders handing out self-defense sprays to women fearful of what he describes as “Islamic testosterone bombs” in the wake of the New Year’s Eve sexual assaults in Cologne.
Wilders, surrounded by bodyguards and police, visited a market in the largely blue-collar town of Spijkenisse on Saturday to hand out the sprays, which contained red paint.
Dozens of supporters turned out for the largely symbolic action, while a small group of protesters chanted and waved placards including one that read, “Refugees are welcome, racism is not.”
The publicity stunt fits into Wilders’ uncompromising anti-immigrant, anti-Islam rhetoric that has propelled him to the top of Dutch opinion polls, just over a year away from parliamentary elections.

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