Politicians in The Hague were surprised by Bruno Bruins' resignation as Minister for Medical Care. Many complimented him on his hard work and wished him well and good recovery.
Supermarkets in the Netherlands are being called to take measures to ensure that everyone can get their shopping done during the Covid-19 crisis. Minister Eric Wiebes of Economic Affairs asked that they reserve an hour for elderly customers every day. Actor Thomas Acda started a Twitter action through which healthcare workers in Amsterdam can place their grocery orders and pick them up after their shift.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte could count on praise from both opposition and coalition parties for his address to the nation on Monday. In his speech, the Prime Minister warned that coronavirus Covid-19 will be in the Netherlands for some time, and called on Netherlands residents to face this difficult time together.
Parliamentarians from both coalition and opposition parties are worried about the government's decision to keep schools open for the time being.
A majority in the lower house of Dutch parliament wants gas stations and supermarkets to stop selling cigarettes and other tobacco products by next year. According to the CDA and ChristenUnie motion, tobacco products should only be available in specialist shops, AD reports.
The parties want the government to make agreements with supermarkets and gas stations on this matter. If these stores do not stick to the agreements, the government should force them with a legal obligation. This plan is supported by the CDA, ChristenUnie, D66, SP, GroenLinks, PvdA, 50Plus, PvdD, and SGP.
More than half of medical students believe that people from poorer families have less chance to be admitted to medical school than their more wealthy peers, according to a study by student platform De Geneeskundestudent among its over 3 thousand members, Trouw reports.
In the 2017 academic year, the government abolished the central draw for study directions with a limited number of places, including medicine. Since then, faculties have been allowed to apply their own selection criteria.
In an effort to relieve housing pressure in Amsterdam, ruling parties CDA and D66 want to build thousands of new homes in Almere, as well as a tunnel or bridge to improve the connection to the capital. They want Almere Pampus to consist of 25 thousand homes that can house between 50 thousand and 60 thousand people, RTL Nieuws reports.
A majority in the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, support a D66 proposal to allow childcare centers to refuse children who have not been vaccinated. "This is very important for children and parents who can in this way make an informed choice," D66 parliamentarian Paul van Meenen said to RTL Nieuws.
Schools in Arnhem sounded the alarm about an increasing number of school children smoking cannabis during school time. "In some classes, 50 to 60 percent of the students [smoke joints]", Eelco van der Kruk of the Thomas Kempis College in Arnhem said to the city council this week, speaking on behalf of multiple schools, Omroep Gelderland reports.
The D66 wants to temporarily bring migrants from African countries to work in the Netherlands. According to the coalition party, this can help fill shortages on the labor market. And if there is a legal route to follow, migrant workers can come to the Netherlands without risking their lives by crossing the Mediterranean Sea in the "floating coffins" of people smugglers, D66 parliamentarian Maarten Groothuizen proposed, AD and NOS report.
ChristenUnie, the smallest party in the Rutte III coalition, seems to have the future of the CETA trade agreement between the European Union and Canada in its hands. If the party votes for, there is a small majority for the agreement. ChristenUnie voted against CETA in 2016, but now seems to be changing sides, was revealed in the debate on the trade agreement on Wednesday, NU.nl and RTL Nieuws report.
Before Schiphol can be given permission to further expand its number of flight movements, there must first be a new investigation into safety at the airport, according to coalition parties D66 and ChristenUnie. They want to be absolutely certain that growth will not affect the safety of passengers and employees at Schiphol, NOS reports.
An estimated 0.18 percent of all people over the age of 55 in the Netherlands want to end their lives. That amounts to just over 10 thousand people, according to a committee that researched euthanasia after a full life at the request of the government. More than a third of the older people who don't want to live anymore would like help with ending their lives, the researchers found, NOS reports.
All 26 Dutch members of the European Parliament will be voting for the Brexit on Wednesday evening. Some with complete conviction, others with pain in their hearts. "With reluctance", "we regret it", "it is inescapable", "inevitable", and "this is what the British want", is how the more reluctant Dutch MEPs explained their 'yes' vote to NOS.
The sale of Dutch energy company Eneco to Mitsubishi has stalled due to the Japanese company's history of forced labor during the Second World War. The 44 Dutch municipalities that own Eneco want the Mitsubishi Corporation to enter into dialogue with the Dutch people who were forced to work for them during the war, Trouw reports.
There are major doubts in parliament about D66 Finance Minister Wopke Hoekstra's plans to reorganize the Tax Authority, including from the coalition parties themselves, was revealed during a debate about the Tax Authority with Hoekstra and Prime Minister Mark Rutte on Tuesday, NOS reports.
Hoekstra plans to split the Tax Authorities into three parts - Customs, Allowances, and Taxes. Each part will have its own official leadership, and two State Secretaries will be appointed to be politically responsible for the service. Who the two State Secretaries will be, is not yet known.
After chaos caused by farmers driving their tractors on highways during protests last year, a majority in the lower house of Dutch parliament pledged their support to a legislative proposal that will oblige farmers to put license plates on their tractors. The Netherlands is one of the last countries in Europe to regulate this, RTL Nieuws reports.
Government party D66 no longer wants airlines to decide for themselves whether to fly over conflict areas. Instead, the European aviation authority EASA should be in charge of that decision, according to D66 parliamentarians Jan Paternotte and Sjoerd Sjoerdsma. They will submit a motion to this effect during a debate on aviation and conflict zones on January 29th.
A 22-year-old Dutch-Persian woman who had plans to vacation in the United States with her friends had those dreams crushed when she was not allowed to board her plane to Los Angeles at Schiphol last week. Annahita Mazaheri was banned from entering the U.S. due to her Iranian surname, she said to AD. The D66 wants to know whether the U.S. immigration service has the authority to refuse passengers on Dutch territory.
Support for a nationwide ban on firecrackers and rockets is growing within the political parties, including within the coalition. Coalition parties D66 and ChristenUnie called for such a ban. And two VVD mayors went against their party's position to call for such a ban, NOS reports.
Acting mayor Johan Remkes of The Hague argued for an "enforceable ban on firecrackers and rockets" for consumers on television program Buitenhof. And mayor Jan van Zanen of Utrecht asked the VVD to cooperate in a ban on all consumer fireworks.
In response to a drone attack by the United States on a Baghdad airport, killing an Iranian military leader, Dutch Foreign Minister Stef Blok said the events unfolding in Iraq are "worrying and serious." The attack happened weeks before the Dutch military was to send a frigate and helicopter to help patrol the Strait of Hormuz, which the U.S. requested months ago.
Coalition party D66 wants to legalize soft drugs and ecstasy in order to reduce health risk and drug crime. The party is approaching Dutch celebrities to support a national drug manifesto it is working on, newspaper AD reports based on a message D66 leader Rob Jetten sent to crime journalist Peter R. de Vries, actress Anna Drijver, and criminal lawyer Gerard Spong, among others.
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.
"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.