May 24, 2024
Thierry Baudet, Dutch right-wing leader, assaulted with an umbrella while arriving for a lecture in Belgium

The leader of the far-right Forum for Democracy party in the Netherlands, Thierry Baudet, faced an assault in Belgium when an individual attacked him with an umbrella. Video footage circulating on social media captured the moment Baudet was hit in the face with a folded umbrella as he arrived at Ghent University to deliver a lecture.

Despite sustaining a noticeable bump on his head, the 40-year-old proceeded with his talk.

The attacker, who managed to approach Baudet unhindered, shouted anti-fascist slogans and criticized Vladimir Putin in Russian. KVHV, the university’s conservative student society, extended an invitation to Baudet to speak in Ghent. However, his presence triggered protests from students.

Before his lecture, approximately 20 people gathered in the city square. They draped themselves in Ukrainian flags to protest Baudet’s arrival.

He has been involved in several controversies in recent years, including a 2021 court conviction for “creating a breeding ground for anti-Semitism” due to his social media posts comparing the government’s Covid measures to the Holocaust.

Baudet has made statements blaming the West for Russia’s war on Ukraine. He has also praised Putin and promoted the conspiracy theory of a world controlled by evil reptiles.

Belgian right-wing politician Filip Dewinter shared the video and criticized the security services for the attack.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte condemned the violence and urged people to address political disagreements with words, not violence. Thierry Baudet’s Forum for Democracy party holds a minor presence in the Dutch parliament, and he has held his seat since 2017.

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