Officials of the municipality of The Hague were threatened by builders of traditional bonfires in the run-up to New Year's, according to minutes of a meeting released on Thursday. The builders of the Scheveningen and Duindorp bonfires also threatened each other, the municipality's Security director said during a meeting with the municipality, the police and Public Prosecutor on December 31st, NU.nl reports.
If the European Commission and the European Union Member States make one fist together, Europe can become one of the most important players on the world stage, according to Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte. With countries like the United States, China and Russia increasingly pursuing their own interests, it is time for the EU to join forces. "Power is not a dirty word", Rutte said in his Churchill speech in Zurich on Wednesday, NU.nl reports. "It is now up to us to secure the position of Europe on the world stage."
The Dutch government plans to make Curacao the "logistic hub" for humanitarian aid to neighbor Venezuela, Ministers Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs and Sigrid Kaag of Foreign Aid said in a letter to parliament. Representatives of the Dutch government, in consultation with the government of Curacao, will agree with the request from interim Venezuelan president Juan Guaidó and the United States to do so, the Ministers wrote, NOS reports.
On Tuesday Prime Minister Mark Rutte spoke to his British counterpart Theresa May about the state of affairs regarding the United Kingdom's departure from the European Union at the end of March. "Time is running out. The ball is in London's court", Rutte tweeted after this discussion.
Negotiators from the EU and UK are currently in negotiations, trying to prevent a chaotic, no-deal Brexit at the end of March. "The importance of reaching an agreement is clear to all. I support the resumption of talks in Brussels", Rutte said.
The pupils who organized a massive protest march in The Hague last week met with Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Minister Eric Wiebes of Economic Affairs and Climate on Tuesday. They are not satisfied with the results of the talk, and will therefore continue with protests for more to be done against climate change, the organization Youth for Climate announced on Twitter.
All 700 child asylum seekers who may be eligible for the children's pardon, will have clarity about their future in the Netherlands by the end of the year. Dutch immigration and naturalization service IND aims to complete its re-evaluation of these children's asylum applications before year's end, RTL NIeuws reports.
Aid organization Red Cross and peace organization PAX are calling on the Dutch government to sign the United Nations nuclear weapons ban, a treaty adopted by the UN in July 2017. The Netherlands then abstained from voting on the ban - all the countries with nuclear weapons and almost all NATO countries boycotted the vote, NOS reports.
Over 24 million euros in non-active allowance payments were made to 229 former Dutch politicians over the past six years, the Telegraaf reports based on figures from the Ministry of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations.
Non-active allowance is an allowance paid to former politicians while they're waiting for a new job or their pension benefits to start. Between September 2012 and the end of 2018 a total of 186 former parliamentarians, 18 former Ministers, and 15 former State Secretaries made use of this allowance, according to the newspaper.
Rotterdam will give more of its Stadbeheer enforcement officers extra investigative powers to tackle nuisance on the streets. These special enforcement officers will be allowed to issue fines for 10 criminal offenses, mainly focused on nuisance, NOS reports.
Currently around 40 Rotterdam enforcers already have these powers. The municipality will now train another 80 enforcers to also write tickets. The expectation is that they can be used from May 1st.
The Netherlands and Australia will start talks with Russia about the country's liability in the downing of flight MH17 in the coming weeks, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed to NU.nl after reports in RTL Nieuws.
"We are in contact with Russia through diplomatic channels about state accountability. We are increasingly confident that we will soon be meeting with the Russians", the spokesperson said. The Ministry would not say anything about the date and location of the consultation.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte called a climate protest by thousands of school kids in The Hague on Thursday "fantastic", but added that they can not demand more far-reaching measures from the cabinet. The Netherlands is already doing a lot for the climate, compared to other European countries, according to the Prime Minister. "Guys, what more do you want?" he said, NOS reports.
Anti-racism activists will protest in the Friesland village of Grou on Saturday during the arrival of Sint Piter and Swarte Pyt, a local version of Zwarte Piet. The protest was arranged by action group Kick Out Swarte Pyt (KOSP), which consists of the same people as Kick Out Zwarte Piet, one of the best known groups in protests against Sinterklaas' blackface helper, according to newspaper AD.
In an open letter published in Trouw, 350 Dutch scientists expressed support for school pupils protesting for the climate on Thursday. It is expected that around 10 thousand Dutch pupils will skip school on Thursday to call on the government to do more against climate change.
Enforcement officers in Amsterdam will soon be equipped with bodycams, mayor Femke Halsema agreed with the unions. The enforcement officers working in the city center will also receive extra support from the police, effective immediately, the municipality announced in a press release.
Mayor Annemiek Jetten of Vlaardingen received multiple threats, including death threats. The mayor filed six police reports at the end of last year - four times for insult, two times for threats, RTV Rijnmond reports.
Why the mayor was threatened, and by whom, is still under investigation. The threats may be connected to the decision to ban traditional New Year's fires in the municipality, according to the broadcaster. This decision resulted in a flood of criticism on the city government, and the mayor specifically.
A large number of EU countries, including the Netherlands, officially recognized opposition leader Juan Guaidó as interim president of Venzuela on Monday. In a letter to parliament, Dutch Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs said that the government decided to recognize Guaidó, because Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro failed to meet an ultimatum set by the European Union, NU.nl reports.
Officials from the European Commission want to launch an infringement procedure against the Netherlands for violating rules on pulse fishing, the Commission wrote in a letter to French environmental organization Bloom, which is in the possession of broadcaster NOS.
The European Commissioners still have to agree to this procedure. But according to NOS, it is rare for Commissioners to refuse a procedure. If the procedure is launched, it could result in the Netherlands having to adjust its policy, which can have major consequences for Dutch pulse fishermen.
Karenia J. from Zwolle died in a Syrian prison camp from illness and malnutrition two weeks ago. As the Belgian man she married in the ISIS caliphate also died, presumably on the battlefield, their two young children are now orphans. They are being taken cared for in the area, though exactly what this entails is unclear, AD reports.
The Dutch government wants airlines to share information about their passengers with the government in future. This data is necessary in the fight against "terrorism and serious crime", Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus of Justice and Security said in a letter to the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, AD reports.
The number of new nuclear weapons being developed and distributed and the increased tensions between states that own nuclear weapons pose a major risk to international security, according to the Dutch government's advisory council on international affairs AIV. As the nuclear weapon countries are taking no action themselves to address the threatening situation the Netherlands should raise the issue with the United Nations, the AIV advised, NOS reports.
Queen Maxima fulfills all her tax obligations in Argentina, government information service Rijksvoorlichtingsdienst said following reports in Argentine media accusing the Dutch queen of tax evasion.
Argentine investigative website El Cohete a la Luna reported that Queen Maxima never reported improvements to the real estate and infrastructure on the land she and King Willem-Alexander own in Argentina, her country of birth. As a result, Argentina is losing out on tax revenues, according to the site.
While the majority of the opposition parties in parliament is pleased with the expansion of the children's pardon, the government parties still faced strong criticism during a parliamentary debate on the matter on Wednesday. Opposition parties are particularly dissatisfied about the decision to take in fewer recognized asylum seekers from the United Nations, NU.nl reports.
The coalition parties agreeing on a more relaxed children's pardon for asylum children and their parents who are already rooted in the Netherlands, came just too late for the Grigoryan family.