Vlaams Belang expels councillor after she laid flowers on an SS soldier’s grave
The leader of far-right party Vlaams Belang has said in a newspaper interview that a Wuustwezel municipal councillor that laid flowers on the grave of a soldier that had served with Hitler’s Waffen SS has been expelled from the party. In the interview that appeared in today’s edition of the Sunday freesheet ‘De Zondag’ Tom Van Grieken said that Carrera Neefs is no longer a member of Vlaams Belang.
Earlier this month a photograph of Ms Neefs laying flowers on the grave of the SS soldier Willem Heubel at a cemetery in The Netherlands appeared on social media.
On her own Facebook page Carrera Neefs and in a reference to Remembrance Day wrote above the photograph “I don’t forget these people either”.
Mr Van Grieken (photo above) told ‘De Zondag’ that Ms Neefs had “admittedly unintentionally, caused the party a great deal of damage. Initially she didn’t even want to remove her Facebook post. We then asked her to sign the party charter and she didn’t want to do that either. Consequently, the party’s Executive Committee is of the opinion that her membership should be terminated. Loyalty must be mutual”.
The party charter is a document that Vlaams Belang requires all those that respresent it, be they councillors or MPs, to sign. Ms Neefs had not yet done so as she had been elected as a councillor for the centre-right nationalist party N-VA. The charter always obliges those that have signed up to it tow the party line, including on social media.
"Anyone that won’t sign it in these circumstances puts themself outside the party”, Mr Van Grieken said.
He went on to say that Ms Neefs is not a Neo-Nazi. "I believe her when she says that this wasn’t a political statement. She laid a wreath at the request of relatives. This is ok for me; a person can grieve for someone. However, politically speaking she handled this clumsily not to say stupidly. This was something that could not be repeated”.