An anti-Muslim biased photo on the Belgian news outlet La Libre has been replaced after the European Forum of Muslim Women (EFOMW) sent a complaint to the newspaper. The photo was illustrating an article about a functionary, in the town of Malines, Belgium, who cancelled a civil marriage ceremony because the bride refused to shake his hand on account of her Muslim religious belief. The functionary, named Marc Hendrickx, is a member of New Flemish Alliance (N-VA), a Flemish nationalist and conservative political party in Belgium.
The photo in the original article showed the functionary holding up his fingers in a “V for victory” sign. Furthermore, the article did not mention that the official was not allowed to cancel the wedding for that reason.EFOMW, partner organisation in Get the Trolls Out, spotted the anti-Muslim bias of the article and sent a complaint to La Libre questioning the photo chosen and the lack of the context in the article.
The Belgian newspaper never replied to the complaint letter, but within an hour changed the photo and replaced it with a more neutral image. After a few days, the text was also amended. The latest version included several quotes by the mayor of Malines stating that the functionary’s behaviour was not legal.