The Dutch Human Environment and Transport Inspectorate plans to use "sniffer drones" to check ships' emissions as they approach the port of Rotterdam, to make sure they adhere to new environmental regulations, project leader Marco Buitelaar said to NU.nl.
The Asian state of Brunei implemented new strict Islamic laws on Wednesday, which allows the death penalty for homosexual intercourse and for women who had an abortion to be publicly flogged. The Netherlands is "deeply concerned" by these "inhumane penalties", Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Aairs said on Twitter.
"A serious breach of international human rights", the Dutch Foreign Minister said. "The Netherlands joins [UN Human Rights Chief] Michelle Bachelet in urging the government of Brunei to halt implementation of the revised Penal Code."
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.
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.
The usual procedure was deviated from in awarding the Human Rights Defender Tulip to the Jordanian prince Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, Minister Stef Blokf of Foreign Affairs acknowledged to the Telegraaf.
Pakistan summoned the Netherlands' envoy to the country to express their dissatisfaction about a Prophet Mohammed cartoon contest organized by anti-Islam PVV leader Geert Wilders. "Deep concern was conveyed about this willful and malicious attempt to put Islam in a bad light", the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Islamabad said, RTL Nieuws reports.
The government plans to put an end to the Netherlands' contribution to the the UN military mission in Mali, sources told RTL Nieuws. There are currently 250 Dutch soldiers in the African country.
Minister Sigrid Kaag of of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation wants detention centers for asylum seekers in Libya to close as soon as possible, she said after paying a visit to such a center in Tripoli. She was horrified by the conditions in which asylum seekers live in these centers, RTL Nieuws reports.
In January the Netherlands will again deploy F-16 fighter jets to fight in the coalition against terrorist organization ISIS in Syria and Iraq, sources confirmed to the Telegraaf. A total of six jets will be sent, four for fighting and two as reserve, and they will be stationed at the Al-Azraq airbase in Jordan, according to the newspaper.
A number of politicians in The Hague are concerned about a conference for supporters of the Eritrean dictatorial regime that is planned for the Netherlands, NOS reports based on information from OneWorld.
The gathering will be the annual European conference for youth wing of the only party allowed in Eritrea. It is not yet clear when and where the conference will be held. But according to the broadcaster, it will be in the Netherlands and in the next couple of days. Around 650 people are expected to attend.
King Willem-Alexander emphasized the importance of cooperating with NATO, the United Nations and Europe in his traditional New Year's speech on Tuesday. According to him, "a highly developed country like the Netherlands can not be indifferent to developments in the wider world", AD reports.
Peace, freedom, stability and prosperity don't just happen, the King said. "Without our international partners it is simply impossible. It is therefore good if our voice continues to be heard in Europe, the UN, NATO and everywhere people think past their borders."
The Netherlands was on of 16 countries that abstained on voting on United Nations negotiations on an international nuclear weapons ban. The negotiations will start next year - 123 countries voted for talks on nuclear disarmament and 38 countries voted against, NOS reports.
The Dutch government is investing 7 million euros into providing education to children living in war zones or areas affected by natural disaster, Minister Lilianne Ploumen of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation announced at the World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul on Monday
Western countries do too little to support United Nations peace keeping missions, while they are the ones who can help the most because they have the right resources, Minster Bert Koenders of Foreign Affairs said in a speech at the UN in New York on Tuesday.
United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon was made a Knight Grand Cross in the Order of Orange-Nassau - the highest civilian award in the Netherlands - on Tuesday. Minister Bert Koenders of Foreign Affairs gave the award during a ceremony in the Catshuis.
The UN war crimes tribunal ICTY is releasing French journalist Florence Hartmann from custody. Hartmann was arrested in The Hague on Thursday while waiting for the verdict against former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic.
The Netherlands' Ambassadors Conference is starting in The Hague today. For the coming week Dutch ambassadors, consulates and permanent representatives at international institutions will meet and discuss developments in the Netherlands, the government's policy and important topics for the coming year.
French journalist Florence Hartmann was arrested by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague last week. The conditions under which she is being detained, are being met with international disbelief. According to her lawyer, Hartmann is being kept in solitary confinement, with a light burning 24 hours per day and checked on every 15 minutes.
GroenLinks leader Jesse Klaver thinks that safe and legal routes for asylum seekers to Europe are urgently needed. This will prevent asylum seekers feeling compelled to make the crossing in perilous boats. And in the meantime Europe can prepare for their arrival in a more organized manner, he said at a meeting in Utrecht on Tuesday
Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 was shot down by a Russian-made BUK missile, fired from an area in eastern Ukraine controlled by pro-Russian separatists. This is the conclusion of the Dutch Safety Board's final report on the investigation into what exactly happened with the disaster.
The United Nations committee on the elimination of racial discrimination has released its report on discrimination in the Netherlands following the meeting with the Dutch delegation in Venice last week. The committee highlighted a number of concerns made recommendations regarding, among other things, Zwarte Piet, ethnic profiling by the police, racist statements made by politicians, antisemitic chants during football games, the asylum policy and ethnic bullying in schools.
The United Nations' College for Human Rights will present its conclusions and recommendation on discrimination in the Netherlands on Friday. This will include recommendations on Sinterklaas' highly controversial helper Zwarte Piet
The supervision on the treatment of prisoners in the Netherlands is not independent and not effective enough, according to a statement from the United Nations' Office of the High Commissioner for Human rights. UN experts visited the Netherlands last week to check up on this supervision