The outbreak of coronavirus Covid-19 in Italy prompted the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs to warn against visiting a number of municipalities in the northern parts of the country. There is also an increased risk to visiting Rome, the Ministry said, NU.nl reports.
39 Dutch who were on cruise ship Westerdam arrived at Schiphol Airport on Friday morning. Their plane, a chartered flight arranged by shipping company Holland America Line for 268 people on board the Westerdam, landed at 6:30 a.m. at the Amsterdam airport, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed to NU.nl.
Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs is visiting Saudi Arabia, Iran and the United Arab Emirates this week to discuss the tensions in the Gulf region, stressing the importance of deescalation and free passage in the Gulf. He will also visit Dutch frigate Zr.MS.
The Netherlands criticized a report published by the United Nations Human Rights Council, naming and shaming companies with activities relating to Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory. The Netherlands discourages companies from investing in Israeli settlements, but believes that the UN should keep out of this, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said to NOS.
Four more Dutch people returned to The Netherlands on Sunday after they were extracted from Wuhan, China over coronavirus concerns. Two Chinese relatives of the Dutch passengers also arrived on the flight, which landed at Eindhoven Air Base.
A Dutch person was among the 180 people injured when a Pegasus Airlines plane crashed in Turkey on Wednesday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed. The Dutch man was the co-pilot on the plane. Three people were killed in the crash, NOS reports.
The accident happened at Sabiha Gökçen, the second airport in Istanbul. The Boeing 737 broke into pieces when it slid off the runway and fell into a ditch. The plane came from Izmir, in the southwest of Turkey.
Three Dutch people are on board a cruise ship that has been quarantined near Japan, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Twitter. Ten people on board the ship have tested positive for coronavirus 2019-nCoV. There are no indications that the Dutch are infected with the virus, the Ministry said.
The Dutch embassy in Tokyo is in contact with the three Dutch on board the ship and with the Japanese authorities, the Ministry said. Japan is in charge of the situation.
Fifteen Dutch and two Chinese spouses who were evacuated from the city of Wuhan - the epicenter of the new coronavirus outbreak - arrived safely at Eindhoven Airport around midnight, Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs said on Twitter. The group departed from Wuhan during the early hours of Sunday morning, arrived in France at around 2:00 p.m., and then traveled to the Netherlands, NU.nl reports.
The Dutch people who will be extracted from the Chinese city of Wuhan over the weekend will be allowed to spend the two weeks long quarantine period - to make sure they are not infected with the new coronavirus - in their own home in the Netherlands, provided that their home is suitable for this, the Dutch embassy in China informed them by email, NOS reports.
The embassy initially warned that the Dutch may have to be quarantined in another European country - the country they first landed in. But that now seems not to be necessary, according to the email.
A total of 18 Dutch in the Chinese city of Wuhan, the epicenter for the new coronavirus, reported to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs that they want to be evacuated from the country, Minister Stef Blok confirmed. Exactly when this evacuation will happen, is not yet clear. The Dutch embassy in China warned Dutch in the area that they may have to spend 14 days in quarantine in another EU country.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is currently investigating the possibility of evacuating 20 Dutch people from the Chinese city of Wuhan due to the outbreak of the new coronavirus, a spokesperson for the Ministry confirmed to news wire ANP. The Netherlands residents in the city were informed by the embassy in Beijing on Monday morning.
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.
The Dutch government understands why the United States assassinated Iranian general Qassem Soleimani in an attack in Baghdad on Friday, but the attack did give rise to a much more complicated situation, Defense Minister Ank Bijleveld said in the first episode of talk show Op1 on Monday night, NU.nl reports.
"If you look at what Iran has done and what Soleimani is, he is of course no saint. That was a real crook", Bijleveld said. According to the Defense Minister, Soleimani as the leader of the Shiite militias can be held responsible for "terrible" things that happened in Syria.
The international coalition in the fight against terrorist organization ISIS decided to partly halt a mission to train Iraqi soldiers, in which Dutch soldiers are also involved, after a resolution in which the Iraqi parliament voted against the military presence of other countries in Iraq. The Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs is studying the resolution and is in consultation with the other countries in the anti-ISIS resolution, the Ministry said to NOS.
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.
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.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte is attending a two-day NATO summit in London on Tuesday and Wednesday. The conference is already off to a rocky start, with American president Donald Trump clashing with French president Emmanuel Macron, and a number of sensitive topics still on the agenda.
Former Defense Minister Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert says that in 2015 she verbally informed then Minister Bert Koenders of Foreign Affairs about possible civilian deaths during a bombardment by Dutch F-16s in Iraq, and she may also have told Prime Minister Mark Rutte. She did not mention how many victims there were, only that there may have been civilian casualties, Minister Ank Bijleveld of Defense said in a letter to parliament on Monday night, NOS reports.
State Secretary Ankie Broekers-Knol of Justice and Security is struggling to talk to Morocco about taking back Moroccan nationals whose asylum application in the Netherlands had failed. She wanted to visit the country to discuss this matter, but the Ministry of Foreign Affairs informed her that she "would not speak to the right people", she said to parliament on Thursday, NOS reports.
Multiple Dutch universities are calling their exchange students back from Hong Kong, due to the increasing tensions in the city. The Dutch educational institutions decided to make an active effort to facilitate their exchange students' return to the Netherlands, as a precaution, NU.nl reports.
The University of Amsterdam, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Utrecht University, Leiden University, and TU Delft all confirmed to the newspaper that they are facilitating the return of their students. Radboud University Nijmegen said the same to the Telegraaf.
Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs called his Turkish counterpart Mevlüt Çavusoglu on Monday to make clear that the Dutch government condemns Turkey's invasion of northeastern Syria, he said in a letter to parliament, NOS reports.
Blok asked Minister Çavusoglu to stop Turkish operations in the area and called his attention "to the need to monitor camps" where ISIS jihadists are detained. He also asked Çavusoglu to address the humanitarian need in the area.
The trial against four men suspected of involvement in the downing of flight MH17 will take over a year. The court in he Hague set different periods aside for the court case, starting on 9 March 2019 and ending on 26 March 2021. All in all, the court reserved 25 weeks in the high-security Schiphol Judicial Complex for the MH17 trial.
A vast majority in the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, support sanctions against Turkey following a Turkish invasion in northeastern Syria. The Dutch government is looking into a "wide range of measures" against Turkey, Minister Sigrid Kaag of Foreign Trade, standing in for Foreign Affairs Minister Stef Blok who is abroad, said in a parliamentary debate on the matter on Thursday, NOS reports.
A 43-year-old man from Amsterdam who was arrested for recording videos with a drone at his hotel in Cairo, has been released, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed. Pieter Bas Habes has been ordered to leave Egypt as quickly as possible, and the Dutch embassy will help him in this. He is doing well, though he needs some time to rest, the Ministry said, NOS reports.
"It is going well and we are very happy", Habes' lawyer said to NOS. The Amsterdam man is expected back in the Netherlands soon. Then more information about his release will be available, the lawyer said.