Noise protest planned for National WWII commemoration

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima at the National Commemoration on Amsterdam's Dam Square, Remembrance Day 2014
King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima at the National Commemoration on Amsterdam's Dam Square, Remembrance Day 2014. Photo: Nationaal Comité 4 en 5 mei / Wikimedia Commons

Action group Geen 4 mei voor mij is planning a noise protest during the national commemoration for World War II victims on Amsterdam's Dam square on Remembrance Day, May 4th. 

According to the anti-racism activists, only white victims are commemorated at this annual event. "The Netherlands only commemorates 22,000 white victims who fell during the Second World War, while 4 million people were killed in war violence in the Dutch East Indies. Non-white lives apparently do not count in the Netherlands", the activists write on. "This while these people were Dutch subjects, since the Netherlands still recognizes 27 December 1949 as the moment of Indonesia's sovereignty."

The activists also find it unacceptable that the committee that organizes the commemoration explicitly states that no perpetrators are commemorated on May 4th, but still commemorates soldiers who died in the Dutch East Indies during the decolonization war. "Yet the 150,000 Muslims who were killed during the genocide that the Netherlands obscures as 'police actions' have never been commemorated. The Netherlands commemorates the perpetrators, but not the victims of these racist genocides."

Committee 4 en 5 Mei, which organizes the national commemoration, did not want to respond to this planned demonstration. "Anyone can post an announcement on Facebook. We choose not to respond to every post", a spokesperson said to broadcaster NOS. "We will not go into this further."

An Amsterdam city councilor for the VVD wants interim Mayor Jozias van Aartsen to forbid the demonstration. A municipal spokesperson told the broadcaster that they are still figuring out exactly what's happening and that the mayor will give a response to the city council during the course of Wednesday morning. The demonstration has not yet been registered witht he municipality. The activists have until May 3rd to do so. 

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