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6 July 2017

An undermining of democracy from here to Tokyo

Foto: SP

The SP is completely opposed to the trade treaty with Japan presented today by the European Commission. SP Euro-MP Anne-Marie Mineur sees it as ‘an undermining of democracy from here to Tokyo’, and as a threat to workers’ rights, regulations designed to protect the climate and the environment, and democratic and transparent decision-making.

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5 July 2017

SP and allies in Council of Europe nominate imprisoned Kurdish leader for human rights prize

The United Left Group in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), which is headed by SP Senator Tiny Kox, has nominated Selahattin Demirtaş for the Václav Havel Human Rights Prize for 2017. The nomination is supported in addition by the United Left Group (GUE-NGL) in the European Parliament, to which the SP is also affiliated, as well as the Netherlands-based Trans National Institute, and Kurds & Friends, a Dutch NGO which concerns itself with human rights in Turkey. The prize is presented annually to a defender of human rights in Europe or beyond. At the present time Demirtaş, leader of the Kurdish left party the HDP and chair of its group in the Turkish Parliament, is being held in prison under harsh conditions, accused of ‘activities which undermine the state.’

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5 July 2017

“We must follow up Panama Committee with a Parliamentary Enquiry,” says SP leader Emile Roemer

SP leader Emile Roemer is demanding that the parliamentary investigating committee on financial constructions must be followed by a Parliamentary Enquiry, which in the Dutch system has greater powers and higher status. The committee today published its report following interviews under oath from twenty-seven experts and involved parties. “The Netherlands is a magnet for corporations who want to enter into shady agreements which enable them to pay as little tax as possible on their profits,” says Roemer. “On top of that there’s 150 billion euros of Dutch capital parked in tax havens, which costs us ten billion euros a year in tax revenues. It’s good to know that tax evasion and tax avoidance are being investigated, but if we really want to tackle the problem then we need to hold a parliamentary enquiry. “

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27 June 2017

Enquiry into waste of money in EU ‘good first step’, says Leijten

Thanks to two SP proposals which won the backing of Parliament, an enquiry is to be launched into the cost to the Dutch taxpayer of financial transfers to the European Union. SP Member of Parliament Renske Leijten is pleased that there will at last be a measure of clarity on the matter. “Every year billions of euros are pumped around the European Union,” Leijten explains. “Member states must first transfer moneys to Brussels before doing their best to get some of it returned to them. Anyone with an ounce of sense can see that this system is time-consuming and expensive. It’s excellent that there will now be an enquiry into just how much money is involved. Then we can put an immediate stop to this wastefulness.”

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25 June 2017

50,000-strong demo demands closure of Tihange nuclear power station

Foto: SP

On Sunday, tens of thousands of people formed a human chain between the German city of Aachen, the Dutch city of Maastricht, Belgium’s Liège and the nuclear power station at Tihange. They were protesting against the failure to close the power station, and the SP was well represented amongst them.

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23 June 2017

Trade treaty with Japan a threat to democracy and a sustainable economy

The trade treaty currently being negotiated between the European Commission and Japan (JEFTA) will allow corporations to take governments to court if they introduce measures to protect people and the environment. This can be seen in documents from the talks made public this evening by Greenpeace. The proposed treaty, in contrast to earlier commitments, contains no more than a few ineffectively mild agreements to promote sustainability.

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21 June 2017

Netherlands against creation of European Finance Minister

On an initiative from the SP, the Netherlands will be actively resisting the proposal for a European Finance Minister. Both French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel have already embrace this proposal. Commenting on this, SP Member of Parliament Renske Leijten said: ‘The European Commission wants to see the eurozone even more tightly under their control and have recently launched plans for a European Minister of Finance and for the EU to have its own budget. If it were up to the Netherlands, we’d call a halt to financial integration right now.’

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21 June 2017

Capital versus the Climate

Every attempt to combat climate change runs up against a veto from capitalist interests. This requires us to imagine a better tomorrow, a future in which we fight for a world in which humanity and the environment, not capital accumulation, stand at the centre.

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15 June 2017

SP urges AirBnB law

Short-term letting of accommodation to tourists via AirBnB or Wimdu has become big business. Increasingly, cities across the world are taking measures intended to restrict online platforms of this kind. The SP wants to see similar laws introduced in the Netherlands. “There is nothing wrong with temporarily letting out your house or a room, but AirBnB takes it too far, in particular in Amsterdam,” says SP Member of Parliament Sandra Beckerman. “We have to ensure that whole streets don’t end up consisting entirely of AirBnB. That’s what will happen if we do nothing. That’s what I want to prevent. What’s needed are clear rules so that AirBnB goes back to being fun.”

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