On Thursday evening Edith Schippers announced that government formation talks between the VVD, CDA, D66 and GroenLinks collapsed. The parties could not agree on a migration policy, and there were problems agreeing to issues concerning climate change, sustainability and income equality.
After 61 days of negotiations, talks to form a new Dutch ruling cabinet fell apart on Monday, according to a press release from Edith Schippers. "It has not worked out; the talks have ended," Schippers said at the beginning of a press conference announcing the news.
Nearly nine weeks after the election, the parties differences were simply too great, she added. Attempts at forming a policy to handle migrants to the Netherlands proved to be the last straw. The parties were also far apart on issues related to climate change, energy sustainability and income she said.
From a survey by Whooz regarding Dutch citizens' preferences for the current coalition formation among 9,500 respondents divided in 14 target groups, it appears a coalition between the 'core bloc' of VVD, D66 and CDA together with GroenLinks is most popular. This cabinet is slightly more desirable to Dutch citizens than a combination of the core bloc with the ChristenUnie. Third in line is a leftist coalition with CDA, D66, GroenLinks, SP, PvdA and PvdD.
Controversial websites GeenStijl and Powned definitely make use of Islamophobic language and may play a part in the rising anti-Muslim sentiment in the Netherlands, University of Amsterdam researcher Dr. Ineke van der Valk said to NPO Radio 1.
Discount website Groupon recently started offering helicopter flights over Amsterdam by company Heliams.com. This week there is a significant discount on the offer, causing great annoyance in the PvdA faction in Amsterdam, Het Parool reports.
Netherlands residents have slightly more confidence in each other and the authorities, such as the police and judiciary, according to figures Statistics Netherlands released on Monday. Data from 2015-2016 shows that 60 percent of Dutch older than 15 trust their fellow human beings. That is 2 percent more than the 58 percent who trusted the rest of society in the period 2012 to 2014. A clear majority of 70 percent of Dutch have confidence in the police and judiciary.
The Netherlands fell in the KidsRights Index for the second year in a row. Last year the Netherlands dropped from 2nd place to 13th place, and this year the country dropped another two spots to 15th place. Less prosperous countries like Thailand and Tunisia are now ahead of the Netherlands in the Children's Rights Rankings, NOS reports.
For the first time ever in the Netherlands, a woman will lead the Islamic Friday Prayers. This will happen during a meeting in Paradiso in Amsterdam, Het Parool reports.
The woman in question is Amina Wadud, an Islamic theologian from the United States. She is known for her fight for women's rights. Wadud is visiting the Netherlands at the invitation of Hasna El Maroudi.
Wadud is leading the Friday Prayers from the Paradiso because no mosque in the country would allow a woman to do so, three mosque dome organizations said to newspaper Trouw.
The PvdA in the Provincial States of Zuid-Holland thinks that the province should do more to facilitate sex in the outdoors. The party is concerned about the declining number of gay cruising spots in the province and thinks that the province should do more to protect them or create new ones, Anne Koning of the PvdA said to Omroep West.
The CDA is causing annoyance at the government formation negotiation table because party leader Sybrand Buma is saying 'no' to almost every proposed climate measure, sources around the negotiations told newspaper AD.
Amsterdam alderman for public space Abdeluheb Choho (D66) wants to increase tourist tax in the city from 5 percent to 15 percent, he said to the Telegraaf. The money made by the increase can be used to make Amsterdam a more pleasant place for residents.
According to Choho, raising the tourist tax several advantages. "It does not hit the ordinary Amsterdammer and the money you collect with this can immediately be reinvested into the city", he said to the newspaper.
Opposition parties PVV and SP want clarity from Edith Schippers on the status of the government formation. Schippers is leading negotiations between the VVD, CDA, D66 and GroenLinks on the four parties forming a government together.
On Wednesday afternoon European Central Bank president Mario Draghi is visiting the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament. He can expect to be met with hostility and demands for the ECB to stop pushing billions of euros into the European economy in an effort to boost growth, NU.nl reports after speaking with numerous parliamentarians.
The Amsterdam police need 545 extra police officers in order to effectively deal with the increasingly busy city, assassination investigations and terrorism threats, according to Amsterdam police chief Pieter-Jaap Aabersberg. Mayor Eberhard van der Laan sent a letter in which Aalbersberg details the need of the Dutch capital's police force, to the government in The Hague, Het Parool reports.
GroenLinks wants all government agencies, such as the Tax Authorities, to stop advertising on website GeenStijl now that the blog is accused of sexism. GroenLinks parliamentarian Corinne Ellemeet calls for "rapid change" and wants to know how Finance State Secretary Eric Wiebes will "ensure that the Tax Authorities no longer financially supports sexism in the media", AD reports.
"Day by day we struggle on", current Prime Minister and VVD leader Mark Rutte said about the negotiations between the VVD, CDA, D66 and GroenLinks on forming a new government together. He added that no one is trying to drag the negotiations out. After seven weeks of talks, the atmosphere is still pleasant, but forming a government is also "hard work", he said after the latest negotiation session on Monday, the Telegraaf reports.
Outraged reactions flooded social media after Christian party SGP revealed a poster invitation to a discussion event in Olderbroek, Gelderland. The poster shows a picture of a bomb and the words "Is Islam a threat to the Netherlands?" The poster was designed by the national office of the SGP youth division, according to Omroep Gelderland.
The Dutch language is still very popular among its speakers and is not being displaced in any significant way by English, according to a study by the Meertens Institute, Taalunie and Ghent University, Trouw reports.
Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Foreign Affairs Minister Bert Koenders expressed their congratulations to new French president Emmanuel Macron and congratulated the French population for choosing pro-Europe and anti-xenophobia. PVV leader Geert Wilders congratulated runner up nationalist candidate Marine Le Pen on getting the votes of "millions of patriots".
The kidnapping of a young Amsterdam girl is expected to be a key topic of conversation when Bert Koenders, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, meets his Indian counterpart, Sushma Swaraj, in New Delhi. The two are scheduled to speak with each other on Tuesday at the end of Koenders’ four-day official visit, newswire ANP reported.
Flag vendors and sellers noticed an increase in the sale of the controversial orange-white-blue Prince flag, best known as a symbol for Dutch Nazi sympathizers and fascist party NSB, BNR reports after surveying a number of flag vendors. According to the results, the flag currently crosses counters dozens of times a year.
At 8:00 p.m. on Thursday the Netherlands commemorated the victims of World War II with two minutes of silence. Eleven people were arrested at or around the Remembrance Day commemoration ceremony on Dam Square in Amsterdam. According to the police, most committed minor offenses, AD reports.
Dutch journalist Derk Walters - NRC correspondent on Israel and Palestine - was told to leave Israel by July. The Israeli Government Press Office (GPO) will not renew his work visa. According to the GPO, this is because NRC does not adhere to the country's accreditation rules. However, the NRC believes it is because Walters is critical about Israel in his reporting.