On Friday afternoon the Blauwe Moskee an Amsterdam will sound its first enhanced call to prayer. A specialized company connected the speakers and performed noise measurements on Thursday, to make sure the Adhan does not exceed any noise limits, imam Yassin Elforkani said to Het Parool.
Amsterdam is stepping up the fight against drug crime with a package of measures focused on making neighborhoods and their residents more resilient, and on "actively disrupting" drug dealing. Dealers will be tackled at their hangouts and garage boxes, and young people who are in danger of entering the drug world will be better monitored, the city said in a statement.
In a radio interview with Amsterdam fire brigade commander Leen Schaap about systemic racial and gender bias in the fire department, Schaap claimed that Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema found a common racist joke in the fire department "funny" and "hilarious". Halsema's office disputed Schaap's claim. Schaap said to radio program This American Life that the joke in question involves the a racial slur often made against people of color in the Amsterdam fire department.
After the murder of defense attorney Derk Wiersum in front of his Amsterdam home last week, the city is offering extra security to a large number of people. Many also connected to the case around alleged drug gang leader Ridouan Taghi. This extra security is necessary, but comes at the expense of Amsterdam's police capacity, mayor Femke Halsema and Jan Pronker of the Amsterdam police said in a city council debate on Thursday.
Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema's 15-year-old son will not be prosecuted for illegal firearm possession. The Public Prosecution Service (OM) referred his case to Halt, where he will likely get community service, his lawyer Peter Plasman said to ANP.
The Public Prosecution Service will keep using key witnesses, even after the murder of criminal law attorney Derk Wiersum in Amsterdam on Wednesday morning. "We must continue to use the means of key witnesses, otherwise we will get no further in criminal cases. Continue in a motivated way", prosecutor Fred Westerbeke said to Nieuwsuur. He wants more options in the use of such suspects-turned-informants.
Authorities investigating the murder of criminal defense attorney Derk Wiersum in Amsterdam have joined forces with Dutch counter-terrorism agency NCTV in the hunt for the perpetrator. Police are still searching for the suspect they believe to be responsible for the crime.
The entire Amsterdam city council wants an emergency debate with Mayor Femke Halsema on undermining crime after the murder of criminal law attorney Derk Wiersum in the city on Wednesday morning. Wiersum represented key witness Nabil B., who linked fugitive Ridouan Taghi to a number of gangland assassinations.
The partner of Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema was formally questioned in connection with the ownership of a deactivated German revolver, according to newspapers Telegraaf and AD. Robert Oey was considered a crime suspect for the purpose of the interview, a spokesperson told the Telegraaf.
A spokesperson for the public prosecution service in Haarlem said the official interview was planned after Oey said the gun which led to the arrest of his and Halsema’s son was actually his.
The weapon that Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema's 15-year-old son was arrested with in July was a deactivated revolver that belonged to his father, Robert Oey, the boy's father and Halsema's partner said in an interview with NRC. The boy found the weapon in a drawer in the mayor's official residence, where Oey left it before going on a business trip to Hong Kong, he said, adding that Halsema did not know the weapon was there. Opposition parties in Amsterdam want an explanation from the mayor.
Udo Kock resigned as the Amsterdam alderman for finance and economic affairs with immediate effect. In his letter of resignation to mayor Femke Halsema, Kock said that he cannot accept responsibility for the solution that the office of mayor and aldermen decided on for the problems at waste and energy company AEB, AD reports.
While not all the violent incidents in Amsterdam Zuidoost over the past weeks can be linked, there is a common thread, Amsterdam police chief Frank Paauw and mayor Femke Halsema said in a city council debate on Thursday. More than conventional measures will be needed to tackle the violence in the district, Halsema said, Het Parool reports.
The Amsterdam police will investigate how information about the arrest of mayor Femke Halsema's 15-year-old son leaked to newspaper De Telegraaf. The investigation will be conducted by the Security, Integrity and Complaints Office of the Amsterdam police unit, AD reports.
The police and Public Prosecution Service released a joint statement denying that the arrest of Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema's 15-year-old son was kept quiet or covered up. The boy has not been charged with burglary, but did have a fake weapon with him when he was arrested last month, lawyer Peter Plasman, who is representing the boy, said in an interview with newspaper AD.
Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema's son was arrested in July. He was caught in connection with an armed burglary, and police officers in the city fear that the case will be covered up, the Telegraaf wrote on Wednesday. That is not what happened, the mayor argued in a public letter and translated below.
The entire city council of Amsterdam wants an emergency debate on measures against gun violence after a series of shootings in the city over the past weeks. There were five shooting incidents in Amsterdam over the past four days. "Firearms and violence do not fit in our city. We therefore want to express our horror at the increasing violence", the party leaders in the city council said in a joint statement, AT5 reports.
The number of reports of health problems caused by laughing gas is increasing rapidly in the Netherlands, according to figures from the national poisoning information center NVIC. The center calls this a "worrying development". Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema is looking into measures to curb the sale of laughing gas on the city streets.
The police confiscated flyers handed out by pedophile group Kinderbevrijdingsfront during the Pride Walk in Amsterdam on Saturday. According to the police, the flyers were seized because of bystanders' severely upset reactions to them. "This man handed out flyers in the Vondelpark and the organization of the Pride Walk did not want that", a police spokesperson said to Het Parool.
Around 15 thousand people participated in the Pride Walk in Amsterdam on Saturday, according to the organizers of Pride Amsterdam. The march through the Dutch capital, which is dedicated to drawing attention to the situation of LGBTQ people in countries where being gay is punishable, is the traditional start of the annual event, NU.nl reports.
The debate on the future of Amsterdam’s Red Light District was once again met with opposing ideas and interests by residents and sex workers during the last meeting held on Friday at the Compagnietheater.
The municipality of Amsterdam closed the Hotel Parkview on Korte van Eeghenstraat indefinitely on Thursday. Two incidents involving explosives at the hotel seriously affected public order and put local residents in danger, which is why Mayor Femke Halsema decided to close the hotel immediately, the municipality said in a statement.
The first meeting to discuss the future of Amsterdam’s Red Light District was met with disagreement and polarizing opinions on Wednesday evening at the Compagnietheater, the 18th century former church that sits in De Wallen. The meeting, organized by Mayor Femke Halsema, gathered residents, sex workers, and entrepreneurs who will be affected by the proposed changes for the area.
Amsterdam will not host the Eurovision Song Competition. The Ziggo Dome, the intended location, is not available when the Song Competition is set to be held. " This in connection with bookings and reservations that on closer inspection can not be rebooked", Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema wrote in a letter.
The city tried to find another location, but it was to no avail. The RAI and Johan Cruijff Arena are also unavailable. And AFAS Live is too small.
Mayor Femke Halsema of Amsterdam is currently exploring various options for a new prostitution policy in the Red Light District. One of the options she is considering is closing all the window brothels in the area, NU.nl reports.
According to the mayor, the situation in the center of Amsterdam increasingly "dire" due to the continuing suspicions of human trafficking and the growth of unlicensed prostitution. "It forces us to put the prostitution policy on the agenda again", she said in a letter to the city council on Wednesday.