Zwarte Piet

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Nov 18 '14 09:22

A 31 year old man was arrested in Almelo during the Sinterklaasintocht for assaulting a 15 year old girl dressed as Zwarte Piet.

Nov 17 '14 17:45

Following exceedingly racist reactions to a selfie posted by footballer Leroy Fer, the Dutch national football association, KNVB, confirmed they contacted the public prosecutor to investigate the response for possible crimes. The football association waited until after Sunday’s European Championship qualifier against Latvia before making their decision, to prevent any unnecessary distractions amongst teammates.

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Nov 17 '14 09:49

On Sunday night Robin van Persie, captain of Oranje, called on the Public Prosecutor to investigate the racist comments on the selfie Leroy Fer posted on Twitter and Instagram. The photo depicted Fer along with other dark skinned players of the Dutch national team.

Nov 16 '14 16:47

Dozens of people in Amsterdam protested the inclusion of Zwarte Piet in the city’s annual Sinterklaas parade. Protestors were corralled in Beursplein in front of the city’s centrally-located stock exchange during Sunday’s event.

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Nov 16 '14 15:09

A group photo of several non-white Dutch national football players sparked a torrent of racially-charged remarks targeting the teammates. Midfielder Leroy Fer posted the photo of himself with eight other players on Twitter and Instagram, including Memphis Depay, Karim Rekik, Kenneth Vermeer and Gregory van der Wiel.

Nov 16 '14 09:00

Nearly 90 people were arrested in Gouda yesterday for arguing over the presence of blackfaced Zwarte Piet characters at the city’s annual arrival of Sinterklaas celebration. Those taken into custody were a mix of protestors and Zwarte Piet supporters, police told broadcaster Omroep West.

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Nov 14 '14 09:10

Last night the Sinterklaasjournaal introduced a few White Petes. Or at least a Piet-in-training with a few soot marks on his face from going down the chimney.

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Nov 13 '14 15:08

Dutch filmmaker Sunny Bergman was met with stunned looks and stern words from Londoners when she dressed up as Zwarte Piet to gauge reaction to the character abroad. A three-minute clip of her documentary, Our Colonial Hangover, was posted to YouTube featuring the director's day out in blackface.

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Nov 12 '14 14:54

The Council of State ruled that the Court of Amsterdam is not allowed to chastise Mayor Eberhard van der Laan over Zwarte Piet.

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Nov 12 '14 09:58

The Sinterklaas festival will again be "old fashioned" this year. The first episode of the Sinterklaasjournaal ended with the Pieten drilling holes in the wall of the steam boat to hang a painting, with water sloshing over their shoes. The Zwarte Pieten all had black faces, like always.

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Nov 11 '14 15:40

Stepping into the fray of an oftentimes volatile debate on racism in the Netherlands, the Rijksmuseum national gallery in Amsterdam will open a new exhibit detailing the “Birth of Zwarte Piet.” The character, beloved by many Dutch people and reviled by many ethnic minorities, is said to be the Moorish slave assistant to Christmas-time legend Sinterklaas, and is often portrayed by a white person in blackface.

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Nov 4 '14 11:43

According to the Board for the Protection of Human Rights, the public Prof. Kohnstamm school in Utrecht may celebrate Sinterklaas with Zwarte Piet in the classroom this year.

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Oct 31 '14 14:29

Sinterklaas will be celebrated traditionally this year. Sinterlaas committees across the country say that there will be no changes in the arrival in response to the discussions on Zwarte Piet.

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Oct 30 '14 13:10

The police have managed to recover a Sinterklaas and Zwarte Piet costume that was stolen from a shop in Burchstraat in Nijmegen on Saturday.

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Oct 28 '14 10:27

According to the action group Pro-Zwarte Piet, Dutch businesses who sponsor money or materials to pro-Zwarte Piet actions, want to remain anonymous.

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Oct 23 '14 08:48

Despite all the protests and controversy, Zwarte Piet costumes and black face paint are flying off the shelves.

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Oct 17 '14 15:13

The police in Dordrecht wrongly arrested two men in 2011 because they protested against Zwarte Piet at the arrival of Sinterklaas. The National Ombudsman declared their complaint against the police valid.

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Oct 16 '14 15:50

The largest pepernoten factory in the world opens in Amsterdam on Wednesday. This is also the first pepernoten store in the Netherlands.

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Oct 16 '14 14:49

The Council of State discussed Zwarte Piet in Amsterdam today. Mayor Eberhard van der Laan will appeal against the decision of the administrative court earlier this year, which ruled that the permit for the Sinterklaastocht 2013 should be reconsidered.

Oct 15 '14 12:46

Dozens of Dutch celebrities have decided to enter the debate on Zwarte Piet. Should Sinterklaas's helper remain black? Or is a multicolored Piet better? These celebrities give their opinion on the Facebook page Piet Makeover.

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Oct 14 '14 13:35

The municipality of Gouda announced today that not only black, but also "Gouda" helpers will accompany Sinterklaas in this year's nationwide arrival of the saint.

Oct 13 '14 13:58

In an effort to pacify Zwarte Piet backers, Albert Heijn published a "love poem" to Piet in the morning newspapers. The poem reads that Piet is not banned from the shops and that it does not matter to Albert Heijn whether Piet is black or a different color.

Oct 13 '14 10:54

Several of the Albert Heijn franchise owners have decided to defy the supermarket chain's national policy to remove Zwarte Piet from advertisements.

Franchise owner Schuytgraaf from Arnhem stated of Facebook that Zwarte Piet will be found in his store in Elst during the coming months. This status update received more than 2 thousand likes. "On 5 December Zwarte Piet will be walking through the store as usual," he says.

As far as franchiser Hans Geveling is concerned, nothing will change in Albert Heijn stores in Huissen, Bemmel, Gendt and Druten.

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Oct 10 '14 12:26

According to experts, the cozy, traditional Dutch image of "our Appie" (a service of Albert Heijn), received a dent after the announcement that Zwarte Piet will no longer be used in their campaigns.

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