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22 Dec 2016

SP opposes prolongation of controversial mission in Mali

Foto: SP

The SP voted on Thursday against the prolongation of the Dutch participation in the UN mission in Mali. SP Member of Parliament Jasper van Dijk explains: “Because of its controversial goals, the mission in Mali is a mission impossible. The task is on the one hand the restoration of state control and on the other reconciliation between the warring parties. That can’t be done at one and the same time, because UN soldiers will be seen as allies of the Malian government. Opponents of the government, such as the Tuareg in Mali’s north, thus consider the United Nations to be an enemy.”

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21 Dec 2016

What to make of these three?

Foto: SP

Trump, Erdoğan and Putin. These names make the world shudder on an almost daily basis. Many people are asking themselves whether the world is becoming even more unsafe because of them. Harry van Bommel takes a rather different look at the matter.

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19 Dec 2016

Senator Overbeek: Withdrawing from UN development treaty arbitrary and senseless

Foto: SP

On Monday evening Henk Overbeek participated for the first time in a debate in the Senate. During his maiden speech, Overbeek spoke about the government’s intention to abrogate the treaty which forms the basis of the Netherlands’ membership of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).

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16 Dec 2016

Whitewash on Ukraine treaty cheats voters

Foto: SP

With his deal on the European Union’s Association Agreement with Ukraine, Prime Minister Mark Rutte is cheating those who voted to reject the treaty at the referendum on April 6th. “This deal is a shameless whitewash,” says SP Member of Parliament Jasper van Dijk. “The voters gave a crystal clear result at the referendum. They said ‘No’ to the Association Agreement. The only correct option was therefore to reject the treaty.”

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14 Dec 2016

SP welcomes Belgian request for Court ruling on CETA

Foto: unknown

The SP has welcomed Belgium’s decision to move swiftly to ask the European Court of Justice (ECJ) to rule on parts of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) between the EU and Canada. Particularly concerning is the arbitration system which forms a section of the treaty, a system which is extremely controversial and in the view of many experts, including academics and judges, could be in conflict with the European system of law. The European Parliament recently refused to request such a judgment.

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14 Dec 2016

Commission must at last be open about anti-corruption policy

Foto: European Parliament / Plenaire vergaderzaal EP in Straatsburg.

In a joint declaration, the European Parliament’s cross-party Intergroup on Integrity, Transparency, Corruption and Organised Crime and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) have called on the European Commission to at last exhibit openness about its anti-corruption policy. The call was also supported by Council of Europe body the Group of States against Corruption, known by its French acronym of GRECO. SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong, who is co-chair of the Intergroup, explained that “not only with the European Parliament but also in the UN and the Council of Europe the Commission has nothing to say about the reports on combating corruption in the EU, and in particular within the European Union institutions. In holding its tongue in this way the Commission is giving licence to countries both inside and beyond the EU to join them in failing to meet their reporting obligations.”

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14 Dec 2016

Tiny Kox: Premier Rutte pulls dead rabbit from his hat to force through Ukraine treaty

After months of foot-dragging Dutch Prime minister Mark Rutte must give a clear answer to a simple question. Is the government going to ratify the European Union Association Agreement with Ukraine or not?

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12 Dec 2016

The rule of law is not a campaign tool

Foto: SP

On Friday I decided not to react to the guilty verdict in the trial of Geert Wilders, the far right leader arraigned for leading a chant calling for Moroccans to be deported. As a politician in a democracy it isn’t your place to comment on the judicial power. We do after all have a separation of powers in the Netherlands, and however tempting it may sometimes be, it behoves us to keep our views to ourselves.

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11 Dec 2016

European Parliament Employment and Social Affairs Committee backs resistance to CETA

Foto: SP

CETA will cost the European Union 204,000 jobs and create sectoral distortions which will lead to long-term unemployment, according to a ruling by which the European Parliament Employment and Social Affairs Committee rejected the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement with Canada. The Committee voted to endorse an extremely critical report from    Bulgarian social democrat Georgi Pirinski.

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