A former member of parliament in Belgium who was convicted of Holocaust denial has been ordered to visit concentration camps and write about his experiences as part of his punishment.
Laurent Louis, who has been expelled from numerous political parties, was also fined $20,000 for his comments questioning the number of Jews killed in gas chambers during the Holocaust.
“All that is left for me to do is to go and report in the death camps,” Laurent wrote in a statement after the verdict. “No doubt, the Court has recognized my talents as a writer.”
He also said that his punishment would be an opportunity to “denounce current genocides”—which, The New York Times noted, is similar to language that he has used to denounce Israel’s actions in the Gaza Strip.
Deborah Lipstadt, the Emory University professor and prominent historian of the Holocaust, told the Times that she was worried Louis would make a mockery of his sentence.
“When he said, ‘The court has recognized my talents as a writer?’ Give me a break,” she said. “Can he write, ‘Well, I went and I didn’t see anybody being killed’ or, ‘These gas chambers were incapable of killing someone?’”