Immigration enriches Dutch society and should be seen in a positive light, immigration minister Gerd Leers says in an interview with the magazine of the Christian Democrats’ scientific institute.
Leers says immigration has been given a bad reputation in the past and a society that wants to stop immigration is ‘on the wrong road’.
‘Much of the policy I carry out comes from the Christian Democrat election programme. That fact has unfortunately been pushed aside because we are in a coalition with Geert Wilders,’ he adds.
The minister sees immigration as a positive that has made the Netherlands what it is. ‘We must be open for people who have left their home because of oppression or the fear of being killed,’ he says.
However, he does recognise the negative side of immigration and says: ‘We have to be selective and weed out people who have no chance of contributing to our society’.
Anti-Islam PVV party leader Geert Wilders immediately tweeted that Leers is talking nonsense. ‘The PVV insists that agreements and results are adhered to.’