Russian consulate tagged with pro-Ukraine graffiti
Vandals in Maastricht spray-painted the colors of the Ukrainian flag on the walls and windows of the Russian consulate there. Along with text written in Cyrillic, the phrase "Hands off UKR" was also painted on the building in blue and yellow.
The honorary consul stationed there is Constantijn van Vloten. The 70-year-old Dutch man has business interests in Saint Petersburg, and was appointed to the role leading the Consulate of the Russian Federation in Noord-Brabant and Limburg. The consulate represents the interests of Russian nationals in both provinces of the Netherlands.
Van Vloten said he views Russian President Vladimir Putin as the one man who is trying to prevent the Third World War, the newspaper wrote. He used similar language as Putin to justify the war in Ukraine.
The speculation in Maastricht is that may have prompted an angry response from graffiti artists, who decided to exact revenge by smearing the consulate in paint. Additionally, signs were pasted on the walls featuring a picture of Van Vloten standing behind his desk, with Putin’s portrait behind him. Above the photograph is the word, “Traitor,” and below it reads, “We want you out.”
“People are calling me an ass licker now,” Van Vloten told De Limburger earlier this week.
The consulate's nameplate was also unscrewed and removed from the wall on Achter de Comedie, the name of the street where the building is located. To avoid problems, the consulate removed the Russian flag from the building’s exterior.
Reporting by ANP.