h
10 October 2017

SP leader on new Dutch government: “New faces, same old story”

“The new government is singing the same song, with the same discordant melody.” This was SP leader Emile Roemer’s initial reaction to the formation, after a wait of 208 days since March’s general election, of a new four-party centre-right coalition government. Referring to the fact that this is the third governing coalition in succession which will be headed by Mark Rutte and his right-wing VVD party, Roemer added that “Rutte I, II, of III, it’s always the same: division grows, security declines.”

Read more
3 October 2017

SP success as Senate rejects new nationality law

The residency requirement for foreigners who want to be considered for Dutch citizenship will remain at five years. A law proposed by outgoing Secretary of State for Security Klaas Dijkhoff which would have extended the required term to seven years was today voted down in the Senate. SP Senator Anneke Wezel explains why she is pleased by the decision. “This law would not have solved any problems. On the contrary, adding two years to the required term of residence would simply have created more problems,” she says. “It’s great that the Senate has put a stop to what was merely symbolic politics.”

Read more
3 October 2017

Karabulut: ‘Resignation of Defence Minister is a logical step’

“Inevitable” was SP Member of Parliament Sadet Karabulut’s response to the resignation of Defence Minister Jeanine Hennis. Hennis stepped down following a parliamentary debate on the premature explosion of a mortar grenade during the Netherlands’ military incursion into Mali. The explosion caused the death of two Dutch soldiers and the serious wounding of a third. In a report by the Security Research Council, it was shown that the grenade had been rejected and should never have been in use. The Report also concluded that there was a structural problem in the organisation and culture of the Defence Ministry.

Read more
2 October 2017

Stop subsidies to the fossil industry

Foto: SP

Every minute the fossil industry receives €14,000 in state support. That’s €7.6 billion per year. Almost half of this sum results from the exemption of air transport and shipping from energy taxes. At the same time, the energy transition in the Netherlands is going far too slowly. The Netherlands has never before emitted more CO2 than it did in 2016. The share of the market held by sustainable energy is scarcely growing. We must make the polluters pay instead of giving them huge subsidies. The money freed up could be invested in energy conservation and the transition to sustainable energy, affordable for all. Education and science can and must play a crucial role in this transition.

Read more
1 October 2017

SP: Spanish political violence is out of all proportion

The actions of the Spanish police in Catalonia today must be condemned by the Dutch government and the European Union, insists SP Member of Parliament Renske Leijten. “The pictures of unarmed people, with their hands up, being pulled over and thrown to the ground by the Spanish military police, are a bombshell. This violent attack against one’s own people has no place in a democracy.”

Read more
28 September 2017

Court of Auditors' Annual Report 'much too rose-coloured'

The European Court of Auditors has this year for the first time offered no reproof in its judgment of the EU's accounts. In an initial reaction, SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong says he has his doubts. “Fewer mistakes is of course good news,” says De Jong, “but I'm not convinced. I have the idea that the Court of Auditors has done everything it can to make its report as rose-coloured as possible. What other conclusion can you draw when the European Commission itself in its own Annual Report is more critical than the Auditors? That's never happened before and it seems that the Court of Auditors has deliberately sought to keep the percentage of errors as low as possible.

Read more
28 September 2017

The political enthusiasm of Spain’s Podemos

Foto: Nynke Vissia

Issuing from the Spanish protest movement 15M, the newly-founded left party Podemos, won – “to their own amazement” – five seats in the European Parliament and 20% of the votes in the Spanish general election. Researcher and writer Frans Bieckmann, founder of the progressive thinktank The Broker, says that “Podemos breaks with neoliberalism’s groupthink. They want to determine the rules of the game themselves.” Below Bieckmann answers question from SP monthly Tribune.

Read more
27 September 2017

European Commission 'is shooting itself in the foot' with new asylum proposals

The European Commission today presented its new proposals for a 'more effective and fairer EU policy' on asylum and migration. According to SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong, the various different plans work against each other. “On the one hand they're at last making efforts to develop a more effective and humane returns policy, something that's essential for the maintenance of sufficient popular support for the reception of refugees in their neighbourhoods. There's also more going to be invested in resettlement in the refugees' own regions and in development in Africa,” said De Jong. “But at the same time the Commission is opening the door wide to economic migrants – this serves the interests of no-one except employers looking for cheap labour. With these proposals the Commission is shooting itself in the foot.”

Read more
25 September 2017

Kox: “Convention-based system interesting alternative to current European Union”

SP Senate Leader Tiny Kox, who also serves as leader of the United Left Group in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), sees the Council of Europe’s convention-based system as an alternative to what he describes as the European Union’s ‘one-size–fits all’ approach. Apparently, colleagues across the political spectrum in PACE feel the same: last week they voted unanimously to support Senator Kox’s proposal to put the evaluation of the Council of Europe’s unique system high on the agenda of the coming summit of heads of state and government. “The political leaders from the forty-seven member states need to consider whether they agree with my report when I say that the convention system on which the Council of Europe rests remains worthwhile,” says Kox. “If so, then they must invest a great deal more time, effort and resources in the making and implementation of conventions, and in monitoring them once they are in force.”

Read more

Pages

About the SP

Using the menu in the left-bar, you can get to know the SP, its history, activities, representatives and publications. You’ll also find a selection of SP news and the weekly blog by MEP Dennis de Jong.