From May 1st diplomats will no longer just get away with traffic violations in the Netherlands. The number of traffic violations committed by diplomats increased explosively over the past years, and the Dutch government is therefore implementing a new system to address the situation, RTL Nieuws reports.
Dutch customs officers at the port of Rotterdam intercepted a container with 90 thousand bottles of vodka, which were likely intended for North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and his army command, newspaper AD reports. The container was found in a ship, hidden under the hull of an aircraft on Friday.
The parliament of Curacao is angry at Dutch Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs for announcing that the island will become a hub for humanitarian aid to Venezuela. The parliamentarians believe that the Minister put the island in a difficult position by making the announcement before Curacao's Prime Minister Eugene Rhuggenaath could explain his plan to the population.
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.
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.
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.
The Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, will get some control over an emergency law for the event of a no-deal Brexit. Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs is willing to make some of the amendments that parliament demanded. A large part of the Tweede Kamer called the law as it currently stands "undemocratic", NOS reports.
The Public Prosecutor in Spain will demand four years in prison against 17-year-old Dutch teen Charly T. for the sexual abuse of two underage British girls. T. has been in custody in Spain since August last year, after the two girls accused him of getting them drunk and sexually abusing them. When he will stand trial is not yet clear, NOS reports.
Financieele Dagblad correspondent Ans Boersma was deported from Turkey because she is suspected of having links with a terrorist organization, a spokesperson for Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in a written statement. The spokesperson said Turkey received information about the issue from the Dutch police, who asked Turkey to share information about Boersma's "journeys in and out of Turkey", NU.nl reports.
Iran is almost certainly behind the assassination of two persons of Iranian descent in the Netherlands, Ministers Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs and Kasja Ollongren of Home Affairs wrote in a letter to parliament on Tuesday.
A 17-year-old boy from Noord-Holland has been in custody in Spain for four months. Two underage British girls accused him of sexual assault, but no official charges have yet been filed against Charly T. The teenager himself denies the girls' accusations, AD reports.
"The Spanish judiciary is pretending I had a terrible Master Plan to get two underage girls drunk and then sexually abuse them. But that is not so. I am not a serious criminal", T. said in a telephone interview with Nieuws en Co on NPO Radio 1.
Almost all parties in the Tweede Kamer want the government to amend Article 10 of a special emergency law for the Brexit. The 'Brexit Collective Law' will be implemented if the United Kingdom breaks with the European Union with no agreements in place. But the parliamentarians feel the law gives too much power to one minister and uncontrollable powers to the government, NOS reports.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte reacted in horror to reports of a shooting at a Christmas market in the French city of Strasbourg on Tuesday evening. At least three people were killed and 12 injured, six of whom are in a serious condition, French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner confirmed, BBC reports.
"Horrible reports about the shooting in Strasbourg", the Dutch Prime Minister said on Twitter. "My thoughts are with the victims and their next of kin. I have conveyed my condolences to President Emmanuel Macron."
The Dutch government has information that Russia developed a prohibited cruise missile, according to a letter written by Ministers Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs and Ank Bijleveld of Defense. It involves a SSC-8 missile that has a range of over 500 kilometers, which violates the INF treaty, NOS reports.
The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty was signed in 1987 between the United States and Russia. It put an end to the Cold War. The treaty forbids the development of missiles with a range of more than 500 kilometers.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs accidentally released the name of two groups in Syria that received non-lethal aid from the Netherlands, after previously declaring these names state secret for security reasons. The names were unveiled in approximately 2 thousand pages of documents that were released at the request of Nieuwsuur and Trouw.
Dutch companies like Shell, Boskalis and Van Oord may face sanctions if they remain connected to the Nord Stream 2 project, according to Pete Hoekstra, the United States Ambassador to the Netherlands. If the companies are sanctioned, they could find it difficult to do business with the U.S., NOS reports.
A 55-year-old man from Putten drowned in Israel on Saturday while trying to help two children who got into trouble in the ocean. Another Dutch man was injured. Both children were rescued and are unharmed, Omroep Gelderland reports.
The Putten man was traveling in Israel with a group of 30 people from the Putten Andreas Church. He drowned on the last day of the trip, during a visit to a beach in Tel Aviv, according to the broadcaster.
Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs does not expect that the European Union and United Kingdom will reach a political agreement on the Brexit on Wednesday. "More time is needed to complete those negotiations successfully. At the same time the risk remains that it will not work", he said on Tuesday evening after after a meeting of Foreign Ministers and EU-Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier, NOS reports.
An 80-year-old Dutch woman died during storms on the Spanish island of Mallorca, the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed on Wednesday evening following reports in Spanish media. The victim's family has been informed, ANP reports.
Mallorca was hit by large storms on Tuesday. Heavy rainfall caused flooding on the east of the island.
At least 10 people, including the Dutch woman, died in the severe weather. One child is still missing, according to th Spanish emergency response service.
Mallorca is a popular tourist destination.
Russia for the first time said it is willing to talk to the Netherlands and Australia about the flight MH17 disaster in a statement the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs made to RTL Nieuws.
Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and his British counterpart Theresa May released a joint statement in which they denounced cyber attacks by Russian secret service GRU as unacceptable. They called attacks on international organizations like the United Nations' Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) reckless and destructive.
As the Brexit approaches, the Netherlands is expanding the workforce at embassies in European countries in order to remain strongly present in Europe after the United Kingdom leaves the European Union, a spokesperson for institute Clingendael confirmed to NU.nl.
Thijs van der Plas, a top official at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, discussed this strategy at a conference on the Brexit at Clingendael on Monday. The Netherlands will strengthen over 10 posts in Europe in preparation for the Brexit.
The non-lethal aid the Netherlands provided to various armed rebel groups in the Syrian Civil War "could have gone better", Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs said in a parliamentary debate about the NLA program on Tuesday. However, he does not think it went "unreasonably wrong", and he rejected the suggestion that the Netherlands gave large-scale support to terrorist groups that violated human rights, NU.nl reports.
The Netherlands will grant asylum to 27 White Helmet rescue workers evacuated from Syria, in the midst of an offensive by the Syrian regime, in July. The White Helmets coming to the Netherlands are five families and three individuals, NRC reports.