Politics

Aerial photo of Utrecht
Dec 17 '19 09:55

The Dutch government is implementing a large number of rules, regulations, and law changes at the stroke of midnight on January 1. Below is a summary of changes made in the category Housing and Living Environment, known to the public at the time of publication:

Dutch embassy
Dec 16 '19 17:10

The Netherlands is opening three new embassies in Armenia, Niger and Burkina Faso in order to be "better prepared for migration flows and to be able to cope with terrorism and human rights violations", Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs announced in a letter to parliament.

Fireworks in Amsterdam Oost, 31 Dec 2017
Dec 16 '19 16:20

In a Christmas card sent to parliamentarians, police officers, enforcers and other aid workers called for a ban on firecrackers. First responders always face violence and aggression over New Year's, the first responders said. "We are there for the citizen when needed. Are you there for us?"

Amsterdams Lyceum, a secondary school in Amsterdam Zuid
Dec 16 '19 14:43

The Dutch government is in discussions with the school boards in five cities hard-hit by a shortage of teachers to roll out emergency plans to address the problem. The ruling cabinet announced on Monday it will have a plan in place to tackle the issue in Amsterdam and The Hague by the end of January, and then it will begin addressing the shortages in Rotterdam, Utrecht and Almere.

Farmers and tractors on Dam Square in Amsterdam, 13 December 2019
Dec 13 '19 14:40

Farmers with 28 tractors gathered on Dam Square and Rokin in Amsterdam on Friday to protest against the government's nitrogen policy. They brought food with them for brunch and invited Amsterdam residents to come eat with them, specifically, Dutch-made food "with a low environmental impact."

"Farmer and citizen can talk to each other or enjoy a tasty egg or a hamburger sandwich", action group Argactie said on its website. "We want to use this day to find a connection between farmer and citizen." The protest action will officially last from noon until 4:00 p.m. 

Aung San Suu Kyi
Dec 13 '19 11:20

The government leader of Myanmar, Aung San Suu Kyi, will not be visiting the Tweede Kamer on Friday as planned. The meeting between her and the Foreign Affairs committee had to be canceled due to "unexpected changes" in her program, the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, announced.

Mark Rutte
Dec 13 '19 07:34

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson's Conservative Party achieved an absolute majority in the parliamentary elections on Thursday. Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte is pleased that his win will at least bring quick clarity on what will happen with the Brexit, he said according to NOS.

"I don't feel relief or sadness, but rather an factual finding to settle this. I think everyone thinks that is good news, otherwise it will keep us occupied for years", Rutte said. 

Aung San Suu Kyi
Dec 12 '19 14:20

The Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, will meet with the government leader of Myanmar, Aung San Suu Kyi, on Friday. She is in The Hague due to a lawsuit that Gambia filed at the International Court of Justice against Myanmar, accusing the country of genocide against the Rohingya people. The Kamer seized this opportunity to speak with Suu Kyi, NOS reports.

Childcare
Dec 11 '19 13:40

The Tax Authority released the files of some parents whose childcare allowance was halted because they were unjustly suspected of fraud, at the parents' request because they wanted to know what led to these suspicions. But to the fury of a number of parliamentarians, large parts of the documents are completely blacked-out, according to a video SP parliamentarian Renske Leijten posted on Twitter.

Parents fighting over a child
Dec 11 '19 09:32

Divorced parents who keep a child away from another parent against the rules must be tackled by the police, according to the D66 and SP in a proposal to Minister Sander Dekker for Legal Protection. Police officers must also receive extra training on how to deal with such conflicts, the parties said, the Telegraaf reports.

Bicycle accident
Dec 11 '19 08:04

Minister Cora van Nieuwenhuizen of Infrastructure and Water Management is turning her focus to road safety. Over the next 10 years, her Ministry will invest a total of 500 million euros into safer intersections bicycle paths and roads. This investment is desperately needed, according to the Minister. "The number of victims is increasing instead of decreasing", she said in a statement.

Commander of the Armed Forces, Lieutenant Admiral Rob Bauer watching a dog demonstration during a visit to Dutch soldiers on mission in Afghanistan, 25 Dec 2017
Dec 11 '19 07:34

"The American people are constantly being lied to", is the conclusion of an institute that investigated whether American money for the war in Afghanistan is being well spent. Those involved knew from the start that the war could not be won. Dutch parliamentarians are flabbergasted and want to debate the matter with Defense Minister Ank Bijleveld, NOS reports.

Frans Timmermans
Dec 10 '19 07:59

Dutch European Commissioner Frans Timmermans is pushing to make Europe the first climate-neutral continent, and to achieve this by 2050, according to a 'Green Deal' he and European Commission chairman Ursula von der Leyen will present on Wednesday. The package of measures will overhaul the entire European legislation, the Volkskrant reported on Tuesday.

24 Oktoberplein shooting in Utrecht
Dec 9 '19 15:01

A report by the National Coordinator for Security and Counterterrorism (NCTV) has revised the country's threat level assessment down to level 3 from level 4. The threat of a terrorist attack in the Netherlands is assessed on a five-point scale, with threat level 5 being the most severe and imminent.

Laughing gas, or nitrous oxide, canisters on the street
Dec 9 '19 12:13

Nitrous oxide will become a controlled substance under the Opium Act in the Netherlands to curb the growing use of the chemical compound more commonly known as laughing gas. The substance will be added to the "List II" classification under the law, alongside drugs like hashish, diazepam, lorazepam and butabarbital, the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport said in a statement.

Amsterdam flag
Dec 9 '19 10:50

The 5,400 students of 16 primary schools in Amsterdam Nieuw-West will not be able to attend classes this week, with their school closed for emergency meetings. The schools, part of the Stichting Openbaar Basisonderwijs Westelijke Tuinsteden (STWT) announced in November that it would close the doors to their locations for one week while its teachers, staff, and administrators try to come up with a solution to the worsening teacher shortage in the Netherlands.

Primary school classroom
Dec 9 '19 09:52

Primary and secondary school education is being prepared for a substantial overhaul, with schools allowed to dictate roughly one-third of how teaching time is spent. Schools will still be required to focus their attention on reaching math and language goals, the education ministry announced on Monday.

Netherlands and Morocco
Dec 6 '19 17:00

The relationship between the Netherlands and Morocco must improve, Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs said on Friday, after the Moroccan ambassador to the Netherlands canceled a meeting with State Secretary Ankie Broekers-Knol of Justice and Security at the last minute on Thursday. The canceled meeting emphasizes the importance of improving the two countries' relationship, Blok said, De Gelderlander reports. 

Amsterdam Flag
Dec 6 '19 16:00

Immigration authorities in the Netherlands say 19-year-old Daniel Buter will be released from a Rotterdam detention center for undocumented migrants on Friday. The Amsterdam-born teenager was threatened with deportation to the Dominican Republic, the home country of his birth parents but a nation which he himself had never visited.

Protest against the deportation of Armenian kids Howick and Lili, 12 Aug 2017
Dec 6 '19 10:20

KLM refused too cooperate last year in the deportation of child asylum seekers Lili and Howick. The Dutch airline canceled their tickets one night before they were set to be on a flight to Armenia, according to a report from the Justice and Security Inspectorate, NOS reports.

The night before Lili and Howick's scheduled deportation, the director of KLM called the director general of repatriation and deportation service DT&V. The airline director informed him that KLM would not participate in the children's deportation. 

Femke Halsema
Dec 6 '19 09:30

Mayor Femke Halsema will intervene on the behalf of Daniel Buter, a 19-year-old born in Amsterdam who is currently in custody in Rotterdam, facing deportation to the Dominican Republic. She already contacted State Secretary Ankie Broekers-Knol of Justice in Security, who is in charge of Asylum. The mayor will also look into whether other Amsterdam residents is facing the same situation as Buter, she said to the city council on Thursday, Het Parool reports.

Refugee camp in Idlib, Syria
Dec 6 '19 08:56

A group of Dutch women currently trapped in detention- and refugee camps in Syria are turning to the Supreme Court in a final attempt to force the Netherlands to help bring their children and themselves back to the country. In cassation, their lawyers hope to show that the court cannot force them to be abandoned to their fate in Syrian detention, AD reports. 

Sinterklaas and various Pieten at a school in Amsterdam, 5 December 2019
Dec 5 '19 07:26

This morning parents across the Netherlands will be bringing their kids to school to celebrate Sinterklaas, Packjesavond and the saint's imminent return to Spain. Foundation Nederland Wordt Beter is calling on parents to keep their children at home if their school's party still features blackface Zwarte Piet.

Ivana Smit
Dec 4 '19 16:10

The Malaysian authorities can call on Dutch forensic expertise in the investigation into the murder of 18-year-old Ivana Smit. The Netherlands formally offered its aid on Wednesday morning, Christoph Prommersberger, the deputy ambassador to Malaysia, said on Twitter. Whether the Dutch aid will be accepted, is not yet clear.

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