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First Reactions to Dutch Anti-Quran Film Are Muted

Is this all? That has been the general reaction to "Fitna,' the anti-Koran film by Dutch lawmaker Geert Wilders.

It took a bit of time before the movie, released on the Internet Thursday, picked up attention. An hour after its release about 75,000 people had watched the movie, but soon afterward the online traffic numbers jumped to over 700,000 for the Dutch version and 200,000 for the English version.

The film cites verses of the Koran interspersed with images of violence from terrorist attacks in the United States and Spain and the murder of Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh on an Amsterdam street.

After heated debate preceding the release of the film, first reactions seem to be muted.

The first political party to react was the left socialist party SP, whose leaders said they saw nothing new — just a collection of paper clippings and footage and the same old generalizing Geert Wilders.

The socialists state that Wilders has no eye for the majority of the Muslim community and only recognizes one form of Islam, which is the line of the fundamentalists.

Brahim Bourzak, a spokesperson for the National Moroccan Representation, said he was very relieved after he saw the movie.

The worries for riots that he shared with the Dutch society have diminished, he said. According to Bourzik the efforts from the Dutch government have added to this relief.

He said Wilders must have thought hard about the movie and that it is within the boundaries of the law.

Moroccan mosques will open up for all Dutch people on Friday.

The Moroccan Representation will give a press conference in the El Ouma mosque in Amsterdam on Friday morning.

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