PVV leader Geert Wilders will be prosecuted for inciting hatred and discrimination

PVV leader Geert Wilders will be prosecuted for inciting hatred and discrimination

The public prosecution department is to take anti-Islam party leader Geert Wilders to court for discrimination and encouraging hatred after he led supporters in an anti-Moroccan chant at a post-election meeting. ‘Politicians can go far in what they say, that is part of freedom of speech. But the freedom is limited by the ban on discrimination,’ the short prosecution department statement said. The...  More >

Airbnb to collect Amsterdam tourist tax

Airbnb to start collecting tourist tax for Amsterdam city council Holiday accommodation booking site Airbnb is to start collecting tourist tax on behalf of Amsterdam city council, news agency ANP says on Thursday. The site is also to give more information about the city’s rules for approving Airbnb letting and work together with officials to combat abuse, ANP reports. Some 10,000 city apartments are currently let out via Airbnb, leading to a surge in complaints from neighbours. Until now, landlords themselves have been charged with collecting the tax but many failed to do so. Tourists have to pay 5% for every night they stay in the city. The new agreement between the city council and Airbnb means the online booking service will keep 5% of every booking made for holiday housing in Amsterdam from February. Hotels in particular had complained that their guests have to pay tourist tax but many Airbnb landlords avoided it. Airbnb already collects tourist tax on behalf of San Fransisco, where the company first started its operations.  More >

Cabinet crisis talks enter third day

PVV leader Geert Wilders will be prosecuted for inciting hatred and discrimination Talks aimed at averting a cabinet crisis after three Labour senators voted down controversial health insurance reforms, continued on Thursday, with both sides showing more optimism that a solution will be found. Prime minister Mark Rutte said on Wednesday evening that the talks ‘could lead to a positive outcome’, while Labour party leaders said they are ‘hopeful’. On Wednesday, everyone involved worked ‘step-by-step to reach a solution’, Rutte said but declined to give further details ‘in the interest of the negotiations’. ‘There is not yet a solution but the talks are constructive,’ Labour leader Diederik Samsom said after talks with Rutte in his offices. Rutte is due to attended an EU summit in Brussels on Thursday but did not state whether or not he will go, news agency ANP points out. The three senators on Tuesday refused to vote in favour of legislation which will allow health insurance companies to restrict freedom of choice among patients to doctors...  More >

Uber offers Dutch drivers start-up bonus

PVV leader Geert Wilders will be prosecuted for inciting hatred and discrimination Taxi service Uberpop will start trying to attract new drivers with a €100 start-up bonus in the Netherlands, the AD reports on Thursday. This is completely at odds with the efforts of police and justice ministry officials to curb the service, which breaks taxi legislation, the paper points out. Several Uberpop drivers have already been fined and face legal hearings. Uber Nederland director Niek van Leeuwen told the paper the bonus is necessary because there are too few drivers in Rotterdam, The Hague and Amsterdam – the three Dutch cities where the service operates. Uberpop allows private individuals to act as taxi drivers but has run into legal problems in several countries. Van Leeuwen told the paper that drivers can pass any fines on to Uber while the issue of the company’s legality is fought out in the courts. Currently in the Netherlands, taxi drivers have to be licenced and have their cars fitted with an approved meter.  More >

More people live below Dutch poverty line

PVV leader Geert Wilders will be prosecuted for inciting hatred and discrimination The number of people living below the official poverty line in the Netherlands rose to almost 8% of the population last year, according to a new report by socio-economic think-tank SCP and national statistics office CBS. Relatively seen, there are more poor people in the big three cities of Amsterdam, Rotterdam and The Hague, but there are pockets of poverty around the country, particularly in Leeuwarden, the report shows. Single parent families, immigrants and people on welfare benefits are most likely to be classed as poor and children account for one in three people below the poverty line. Since 2007, the number of people classed by the SCP as poor has gone up by 412,000 to 1.26 million, out of a population of 17 million. The SCP definition is based on having an income which is ‘not much but sufficient’ and includes what is considered necessary to eat, live, buy clothes and take part in social activities. Definitions The SCP puts the poverty level at €1,060 net for...  More >