Pedal to the metal: Netherlands allows Dutch biker gangs to fight Islamic State

Dutch prosecutor says motorcyclists are permitted to engage with Kurds battling jihadists, as long as they do not join terror groups.

October 15, 2014 23:34
1 minute read.
Illustrative motorcycle

Illustrative motorcycle . (photo credit: INGIMAGE PHOTOS)


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The Netherlands has said it does not breach Dutch law for motorcycle gang members to continue their alleged involvement with Kurdish battalions fighting the Islamic State group in Iraq.

It was previously forbidden for Dutch nationals to join a foreign armed force, however, currently it is no longer prohibited, AFP reported Tuesday citing a Dutch prosecutor. 

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"You just can't join a fight against the Netherlands," public prosecutor spokesman Wim de Bruin clarified to AFP. He added that joining groups listed by the Netherlands as terrorist organizations was still punishable.

De Bruin noted the Islamic State organization and the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) as blacklisted terror groups that Dutch citizens can be prosecuted for joining.

Crimes committed while in these groups such as torture and rape are activities that can subject Dutch citizens to prosecution, De Bruin said, adding that such atrocities can be hard to prove given the distance of the conflict in proximity to the western European country.

The remarks were made following local reports that three Dutch bikers from the "No Surrender" gang have joined Kurdish forces in battling the extremist Islamist group in Iraq.

Various countries have been taking increased measures in attempt to prevent their nationals from trying to join the fanatic jihadi group that aims to establish an Islamic caliphate across the Middle East.

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