28 November 2018

Climate justice: From green revolution to social revolution

With the Paris Climate Accord in the air, our country threatens to be divided into a 'green' and a 'grey' class. How can we close this gap in perspective on climate change? Last month researchers, representatives of NGOs, SP members and other interested parties came together for a conference in Haarlem.

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22 November 2018

Halt negotiations with Mercosur trade bloc

Negotiations on the treaty between the EU and Mercosur, which will prove profitable for – amongst others - the European automobile industry and the financial sector, continued last week. Mercosur is the South American trading bloc and customs union comprising Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay and Venezuela. The negotiations have for some time failed to make progress, because the Mercosur countries want to export more chicken and beef than the EU is willing to allow on to the internal market.

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20 November 2018

Saudi Arabia uses starvation as a weapon in Yemen

A famine in Yemen unprecedented in its extent is the result of a deliberate tactic. The Netherlands must take the initiative in imposing sanctions on individuals who deploy starvation as a weapon of war.

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15 November 2018

Great result for rail passengers' rights

Foto: Peter Bodensee / Pixabay

The European Parliament voted today by a large majority to improve rail passengers' rights. Expressing his delight at the result, SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong, said: “Despite attempts by the rail companies' lobby to weaken my proposal, it was accepted in full: better compensation in the event of delay and more immediate support for people with limited mobility.” Referring to the Netherlands' own national carrier, he said that “the NS can no longer hide behind 'falling leaves' or 'frozen points'. Provided the Parliament's report is accepted in negotiations with the Council, serious delays will mean the passenger has a right to assistance and compensation”.

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13 November 2018

Parliament supports SP asylum proposal: More capacity, shorter procedures

In order to reduce waiting times and speed up asylum procedures the government must provide more resources for the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND), according to an SP motion which was adopted today by a parliamentary majority. Commenting on the issues which the motion seeks to address, SP Member of Parliament Jasper van Dijk said: “The procedures can take years, which is partly a result of a shortage of resources at the IND. As a result, many families with children are left in uncertainly for very lengthy periods.” More capacity would at the same time avoid the IND having to make penalty payments to asylum seekers who have had to wait too long for a ruling. On Tuesday it was revealed that the IND has had to pay a million euros in fines of this nature. ”It would of course be better if this money was spent on staffing,” said Van Dijk. “Then you'd avoid both the fines and under-capacity at the IND.“

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7 November 2018

No to new nuclear power stations

Foto: SP

The SP is opposed to the building of a new nuclear power station, as proposed by the government and backed by a parliamentary majority. Whenever we're asked, however, whether we see nuclear power as taboo, we answer with a 'no'. We'll always consider what seems a good proposal. Your thought should never stand still. As things stand, though, we see no real possibility for either uranium, plutonium or thorium, certainly not in the short term. Safety must always be the priority, and at the moment that's not possible, and neither does the Netherlands have a definitive solution to the problem of the mountains of highly radioactive waste which would be produced by any new nuclear power station.

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7 November 2018

Impose an arms embargo on warring parties in Yemen

Foto: -

The brutal murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was enough to convince Germany to suspend arms sales to Saudi Arabia. Before that, the Netherlands had already adopted a restrictive export policy. That's a good thing, but what's bizarre is that despite four years of war in Yemen and export criteria which should make it impossible, European arms continue to stream into Saudi Arabia in huge quantities.

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29 October 2018

EU Propaganda in Education

Kirsten Derksen's student thesis turned out to lead to a radio interview, an article in a major Dutch newspaper, and questions in Parliament. Derksen's study had taken a close look at the influence of EU propaganda on her own education, and what she found was that the European Commission is involved in determining the content of her course and comparable programmes of study.

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25 October 2018

Growing conflict over MEPs' expenses

On 24th October a clear majority in the European Parliament voted to back proposals from SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong which aim to put an end to the secrecy surrounding the general expenses reimbursement for MEPs. Welcoming the vote, De Jong said: “It's idiotic that while most Members are in agreement with the need for improved transparency and accountability in relation to the payment of the €4,400 which they receive each month for office expenses, the EP Bureau, which has responsibility for this, is refusing to implement their decision. So I'm pleased that the Bureau, under the leadership of the Parliament's president, will be called out on this, now that my resolution has been carried. Hopefully this means that the matter can be resolved by the time of the European elections.”

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