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26 July 2018

Trump bluffs, Juncker capitulates

Foto: SP

The SP is opposed to the deal which European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker has signed with Donald Trump. Explaining the party's hostility to the deal, SP Euro-MP Anne-Marie Mineur said: “It's a slap in the face for the widespread resistance to the TTIP, the free trade treaty between the EU and the US, negotiations over which were halted in 2016. Instead of making agreements on fair and sustainable trade, Juncker has committed the EU to importing more liquid gas and more soya, as well as running down all barriers to trade and product standards, These are of course designed to protect the consumer and the environment. Juncker and Trump also want to intensify trade in services, chemicals and pharmaceuticals.

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26 July 2018

Time to take action against Israel's apartheid 'nation state' law

What was in reality already the case has now been formally incorporated into Israeli law. In the country once counted a democratic good example in an authoritarian region, apartheid has now been confirmed as a legal principle. The law from now on will state that only Jewish inhabitants of Israel have the right of self-determination. The 1.8 million Arabs who live there are now also officially second class citizens, their language no longer recognised as one of the official languages and their fate made dependent on the wishes of the Jewish population.

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11 July 2018

Climate Accord must not let major polluters off the hook

From the newly published Netherlands Climate Accord it's clear that just what the SP feared has indeed come to pass. It isn't the major polluters, but households, which are going to pay the price of tackling the climate problem. “This isn't climate justice,” says SP Member of Parliament Sandra Beckerman. “Once again the biggest polluters aren't the target. Industry is knowingly damaging the climate, but the multinationals only want renewables if they come attached to a big sackful of money. Massive polluters such as Shell have raked in billions in profits on gas and oil, but refuse to make a contribution to repairing the climate.”

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10 July 2018

Foul smell of corruption in Brussels

Foto: Tom Parnell

A new report from Transparency International has revealed that a third of Members of the European Parliament are doing paid jobs in addition to their parliamentary duties. Commenting on the findings, SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong said, “MEPs earn so much that with your salary and expenses payments you can be a millionaire after just two five-year terms. That's already a ridiculous situation, but for many it's apparently insufficient. Their greed leads to them taking all sorts of highly paid jobs on the side. If you consider that working as a MEP demands a full-time commitment, it's clear that money is more important to them than representing their voters. Also, this is yet another thing which carries a great risk of bringing about conflicts of interest. That's why for years I've been advocating a total ban on paid work outside the Parliament for all MEPs.”

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5 July 2018

European Parliament vote brings no progress for truck drivers

All of the reports on the EU Mobility Package were today rejected and negotiations in the Transport Committee will have to begin anew. Responding to the vote, SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong said: “Of course it's a good thing that neoliberal proposals have been rejected, but exploitation of drivers continues and the Parliament has not succeeded in finding a good answer to this situation. It turns out that there's just as little chance of gathering a majority willing to give priority to a real social policy. As ever, the market still takes precedence over people. That's why I persist in advocating a Social and Green Protocol which prioritises people and the environment, putting their interests above those of corporate capital and the market.”

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5 July 2018

Permanent War is no solution

Foto: Erika Wittlieb

The government wants to prolong Dutch involvement in the war in Afghanistan. By sending additional soldiers, the Netherlands will remain part of a war which has become permanent and, moreover, unwinnable.

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3 July 2018

Abolishing consultative referendum a massive step backwards

Today the Senate debates the abolition of the consultative referendum. Only a very few European countries have no referenda, yet if it's up to the government the Netherlands will soon join this tiny group. This is thanks to a giant U-turn from one of the governing parties, D66, which has in the past always been in favour of consultative referenda. All evidence points to the conclusion that the Dutch people want to maintain this right.

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3 July 2018

Euro-MPs carry on lining their pockets

Against all expectations the Bureau of the European Parliament, the body which governs internal affairs, has thrown out the – already modest – proposals for more openness around the spending of office expenses. Commenting on the decision, SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong said “Every month each MEP receives more than €4,400 tax-free for 'office expenses'. This isn't supposed to be additional income, but serves for the purchase of such things as laptops, printers and the like. The least that you should be able to expect is that they would be obliged to have their books checked by an external accountant. Yet for a majority in the Bureau, taking their lead from the centre-right and some of the centre-left, this went too far. In my view, these people are simply lining their pockets.  And it's precisely these groups which go on and on about the Parliament's image and who are trying, via expensive information campaigns, to persuade voters to come to the polling booths for next year's European Parliament elections. Their greedy behaviour means, however, that they are losing all credibility.”

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25 June 2018

The war on terrorism must be ended

Since 2001 the Netherlands has supported all sorts of intervention wars in the Middle East and elsewhere. Those conducted under the leadership of the US and NATO have, according to their own statements, been aimed at defeating global terrorism. It began in Afghanistan, where after seventeen years of fighting, no end to the conflict is in sight.

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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.