Politics

Asylum seekers fighting in a shelter in Apeldoorn, 4 Dec 2016
Dec 6 '16 08:21

PVV leader Geert Wilders issued another deportation call on Twitter, posting a video of a "recent" fight between asylum seekers in a shelter in Apeldoorn. But according to the police, the video is just over a year old and the asylum center in which it was shot is not even open any more.

Dec 5 '16 16:55

The fact that Italian voters convincingly voted "no" in a referendum about reforms in the country, is not the start of a new European crisis, Dutch Finance Minister and president of the Eurogroup Jeroen Dijsselbloem said in Brussels on Monday. "The referendum was about Italy, the outcome is not an anti-European vote. The markets reacted calmly", he said according to AD.

On Sunday about 60 percent of Italians voted against major reforms in the country. After the results became known, Prime Minister Matteo Renzi and his cabinet resigned. 

Geert Wilders
Dec 5 '16 10:58

Geert Wilders' anti-Islam party PVV is still gaining popularity in the polls. In Maurice de Hond's latest poll the PVV gained one seat over the past weeks, and 7 seats over the past four weeks. The anti-Islam party is now 10 seats ahead of ruling party VVD.

Over the past month the VVD, CDA, SP, D66, GroenLinks and PvdA all saw a decline in virtual seats, losing 9 all together. Together they now have just 87 seats. In 1998 the six parties scored more than 140 seats, according to De Hond.

Dec 5 '16 09:59

The Dutch government is working on a law that entails criteria foreign funders must meet if they want to give money to a Dutch institution, according to a letter the cabinet sent to parliament on Monday, Het Parool reports.

One of the things the government is considering is an obligation of all foundations in the Netherlands to be transparent about the donations they receive. In this way problematic and undesirable foreign financing to, for example, religious institutions can be better addressed, the government wrote, according to the newspaper.

Dec 5 '16 08:09

Dutch schools still do not specialize enough, which means that not every child gets the specialist support he or she needs, the Education Council wrote in a letter to State Secretary Sander Dekker of Education, NU.nl reports.

The system for appropriate education was implemented in the Netherlands two years ago, and is still not completely up to scratch, according to the letter. The intention behind appropriate education is that more children with extra needs be able to attend a mainstream school.

G20 summit in Australia in 2014
Dec 2 '16 15:45

German Chancellor Angela Merkel invited the Netherlands to the G20 summit happening in Hamburg on July 7th and 8th next year. From Thursday Germany is the chairman of the G20 for the next 12 months, NU.nl reports

Prime Minister Mark Rutte called the invitation good news. "We earn a significant portion of our money in international trade. In the G20 the largest economies of the world discus a wide range of toopics that affect financial stability and economic growth. These issues affect Dutch interests directly", he said.

Sinterklaas and Zwarte Pieten
Dec 2 '16 13:25

Two thirds of parents whose kids still believe in Sinterklaas say their kids are mostly unaffected by the ongoing debate surrounding blackface Zwarte Piet, according to a survey by I&O Research among 3 thousand adult Dutch, AD reports.

Diederik Samsom campaigning for the PvdA in Amsterdam in 2012, with Lodewijk Asscher (holding a microphone)
Dec 2 '16 09:40

The election for PvdA leadership between curent leader Diederik Samsom and current Deputy Prime Minister Lodewijk Asscher, is coming down to a neck-on-neck race. Samsom has the support of some 47 percent of PvdA members and 44 percent support Asscher, according to a survey by EenVandaag among 600 members.

The other 9 percent don't know who they'll vote for yet. PvdA members can vote for their new leader until December 8th. 

Asylum seekers
Dec 2 '16 08:06

Staff memebers working at asylum shelters feel unsafe due to the "antisocial and criminal behavior" of hopeless asylum seekers from North African countries. The situation has become untenable", the works council wrote in a letter to the management of the COA, AD reprots.

The COA is the central agency for the reception of asylum seekers in the Netherlands. AD has a copy of the letter sent to the management in its possession.

Geert Wilders
Dec 2 '16 07:41

In 2009 and 2010 intelligence service AIVD investigated PVV leader Geert Wilders' contacts in Israel, the Volkskrant reports based on its own research. The AIVD was concerned about Wilders' loyalty and that he was possibly being influenced by Israel, according to the newspaper.

Dec 1 '16 14:45

The Dom Tower in Utrecht is deteriorating faster than thought and it is starting to crumble, according to a letter from alderman Paul Jansen. The city is installing nets in the lantern - the open part of the tower - to prevent visitors and other pedestrians getting hit on the head, NOS reports.

The tower was inspected in October. The inspection revealed that the south and west sides of the tower in particular are worse off than expected. The Dom is not at the point of collapse, but intervention is needed. Nets will now be placed in the tower at a height of 70 and 90 meters.

Donald Trump and Geert Wilders
Dec 1 '16 13:35

A "Stop Trump and Wilders" rally is being organized in Amsterdam for Friday, January 20th - the day on which Donald Trump is set to be inaugurated as president of the United States. The rally is to "show solidarity with activists in the U.S. an to prevent extreme-right becoming the biggest in the Netherlands", according to the

Dec 1 '16 11:15

Ban foreign funding for political parties in the Netherlands, DENK parliamentarian Selcuk Ozturk proposed on Wednesday. According to him, this is the most effective way to make sure Dutch politicians aren't influenced by foreign sources, Nederlands Dagblad reports

"Of the PVV is known that there are lines with financiers from the U.S." Ozturk said in a statement. "In that manner the PVV is possibly the long arm of foreign interest groups. Also with the Ukraine referendum there was possible foreign interference."

Dec 1 '16 09:28

Dutch parliament wants Minister Ard van der Steur of Security and Justice to find ways to protect police officers better against people filming them during the course of their duties and then posting the videos online. Officers and their families are often harassed after the publication of such videos, PvdA parliamentarian Ahmed Marcouch said to NU.nl and the Telegraaf.

Dec 1 '16 08:45

The Sinterklaas celebration with Zwarte Piet in his current blackface form can inadvertently contribute to stereotyping, prejudice and discrimination, Minister Ard van der Steur of Security and Justice wrote in a letter to parliament. The government therefore supports the tradition being adapted, NU.nl reports.

"It is difficult, for example in the U.S., to explain the tradition of Zwarte Piet in his current form", the Minister wrote, but he added that the Dutch who "always celebrate the kids party with great joy" are not directly racist.

Bert Koenders
Nov 30 '16 14:40

Minister Bert Koenders of Foreign Affairs is willing to advocate within the European Union for pausing the talks with Turkey regarding their admittance to the EU, he said in parliament on Wednesday, NOS reports

A majority in the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, today voted for pausing the talks. The PvdA added its vote to stepping away from the negotiation table, taking Tuesday's minority vote to a majority on Wednesday. Dutch parliament now supports pausing the talks for six months because of the worsening situation in Turkey.

Sinterklaas
Nov 30 '16 09:01

The Onze Wereld primary school in Rotterdam decided to scrap their Sinterklaas' arrival parade this year for "security reasons", school principal Tilly Terheijden said to newspaper AD. Instead Sinterklaas will arrive at the school out of sight of the parents.

The school decided to have Sinterklaas accompanied by so-called Chimney Pieten this year, instead of the traditional blackface Zwarte Pieten after a complaint by a parent. This decision led to a heated discussion among parents at the school, with both pro- and anti-Zwarte Piet groups rearing their heads.

Woman wearing a burqa
Nov 29 '16 19:57

A controversial , veils, and other “face-covering clothing” from some Dutch public institutions was approved by a majority of parliament on Tuesday. The motion passed by a show of hands, the lower house of parliament confirmed, and will head to the senate for approval.

Nov 29 '16 16:40

Not a single political party in the Netherlands managed to go far enough in their election promises on the environment to reach the climate target set in the , the Volkskrant reports based on its own analysis of the election campaigns of the Dutch parties. Even where programs embrace the Paris targets, their intentions fall short, according to the newspaper.

Nov 29 '16 11:20

Inequality in education in the Netherlands increased over the past years, according to a study done by DUO Education Research. The increasing inequality is more significant in high schools than in primary schools, ANP reports.

The study was done among more than 2,200 school principals and teachers in primary and secondary educations. 18 percent of the secondary education principals and teachers indicated that a growing number of children are getting fewer opportunities at their schools. Among primary schools it was 12 percent.

Jacques Monasch
Nov 29 '16 10:44

Parliamentarian Jacques Monasch, formerly of the PvdA, is launching his own party with wich he will be taking part in the elections on March 15th next year, he announced on Monday. The party is called Nieuwe Wegen, or "New Roads" in English, and strives to combine "social economy" with a sricter immigration policy with priority on "our norms and values", NU.nl reports.

Jihadist
Nov 29 '16 08:38

The measures the Netherlands intends to implement to tackle jihadism and terrorism is in violation of international treaties, including the European Convention on Human Rights, the Council of Europe wrote in a letter to the Dutch government, AD reports.

Ancilla van de leest
Nov 28 '16 17:05

Ancilla van de Leest of the Piratenpartij, or Pirate Party in English, received death threats, she announced during a party meeting in Amsterdam on Sunday. "I received death threats, but because I'm not a parliamentarian and not called Sylvana, I did not get security", she said at the meeting, the Telegraaf reprots.

The young politician was referring to threats made against DENK politician Sylvana Simons, who was given extra security after a video of her being lynched by the Ku Klux Klan was posted online. 

Nov 28 '16 15:55

On Monday the Neterlands and Belgium signed a border treaty in which a part of what was formerly Belgium now falls under the Neterlands and vice versa. The reason for the adjustment was the unclear situation in the area around the Maas between Eijsden Margraten in Limburg and Wezet in Belgium, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on Monday.

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