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Prime minister again refuses to comment on anti-Pole website

Monday 13 February 2012


Prime minister Mark Rutte on Monday again refused to comment on a website set up by the government's alliance partner PVV calling for people to report problems caused by central and eastern Europeans.

Speaking during a visit to Brabant, Rutte said the website, set up by the anti-immigration party, is nothing to do with the government. The PVV supports the minority cabinet on economic policy in return for tougher laws on immigration.

I do not think it will affect the Netherlands' reputation abroad, the prime minister said. 'I will calmly explain it is a website set up by one political party, not the Dutch cabinet,' Rutte told Nos radio. 'It is not up to me to react to everything the PVV says.'


Nevertheless, pressure is mounting on the prime minister to distance himself from the website which asks: 'Do you have problems with people from central and eastern Europe? Have you lost your job to a Pole, Bulgarian, Romanian or other eastern European? We want to know.'

Deputy prime minister and acting Christian Democrat leader Maxime Verhagen reiterated the prime minister's position when questioned by RTL 7 but continued: 'As a cabinet, we support the free movement of workers and eastern Europeans have made a large contribution to our economy.'

'But we do not close our eyes to the problems: unfair competition, fraudulent staffing agencies, exploitation, public nuisance,' Verhagen said.


Earlier, CDA MPs called on Rutte to distance himself from the website. While every political party is free to set up a hotline, Rutte 'could be a little more decisive about what the cabinet actually thinks', MP Eddy van Hijum said. Labour and GroenLinks MPs have also condemned the initiative.

Ambassadors from 10 central and eastern European countries have written to the leaders of all the Netherlands political parties, urging them to speak out against the website.

Employers' leader Bernard Wientjes and European commissioner Viviane Reding have also condemned the website. Reding said the website is ‘an open call to intolerance’.

Earlier stories
Ambassadors protest at PVV's anti-Eastern European website
PVV website is an open call to intolerance
Prime minister refuses to condemn PVV website
Trouble with Limburgers of Belgians? Complaint websites spring up
Employers leader urges government to distance itself from PVV website
Romania wants action on PVV website
Problems with Poles? Report them to us, says new PVV website

© DutchNews.nl


Readers' Comments

What is wrong with asking these questions? I don't understand the fuss, native people should always have priority in there own country, this is common sense.

The EU is a joke, it's a fascist nationalist regime that most people don't want, stand strong NL and run your country yourself!

By Phil | 14 February 2012 4:42 AM

Pretty pathetic but not at all surprising. As I commented earlier apparently the Dutch are not capable of dealing with Wilders and making him behave; they need us outsiders to do the job for them (sound familiar?). I guess we will have to force Rutte to take a stand and have a backbone. Just keep sending complaints to the EC. Here is the link to where you may file your complaint: http://ec.europa.eu/eu_law/your_rights/your_rights_forms_en.htm

By Bill | 14 February 2012 7:03 AM

It shows that Mark Rutte is no leader, but a coward. We need a real leader for a change in this country, one that forces political parties to take consequences for their hateful actions once and for all. After all, this country is responsible for over a hundred and 150 thousand Jewish families that lost their lives during world war 2 because politicians were too coward to speak out or take action against sending these innocent people to their deaths. Many of us here in Breda remember Brave polish freeing Breda during world war 2. Is this the thanks we give our allies and friends? Wilders, you have no shame!

By SandraV | 14 February 2012 7:53 AM

The news on the front page of this morning's Dutch language Volkskrant is that the PVV website is causing an 'international rebellion'. Good, please continue. The international community will 'assist' the Dutch in dealing with Wilders.

By Bill | 14 February 2012 8:41 AM

Rutte thinks if he looks the other way it will disapear.
He will "calmly explain"?
What he refuses to acknowledge is that most foreigners appear to believe Wilders is a cabinet minister!

By Donaugh | 14 February 2012 9:10 AM

What a sad comment on the leadership. The LBA speaks weasel words on why it cannot act; the Prime Minister thinks nobody in Europe thinks this is an issue and looks as scared as a rabbit in the headlights of his ministerial car - which appears the only thing he seems interested in saving. Wilders describes any criticism as a wzaste of paper. It almost makes you wnat to go to Greece! I read one comment that was a diatribe against tolerance on this site. What has happened to a tolerant country that learnt from the mistakes of teh last war?

By Simon | 14 February 2012 9:59 AM

Phil: the fact that you openly admit that you do not 'understand the fuss' explains a lot. thanks.

By Bill | 14 February 2012 10:37 AM

"..native people should always have priority in there own country.." This is illegal under EU law because all EU citizens are local to the EU regardless of their member country origin. I would love to hear how the EU is "a fascist nationalist regime" when they promote openness and solidarity. If it was, it would have supported wackos like Wilders.

By Phil | 14 February 2012 12:24 PM

It is funny to see what Dutch people say about Wilders. In fact, I haven't met not even one who sympathises him or his policies. On the other hand though, I had the same problem finding even one Italian who would have a good thing to say about Berlusconi, and yet, he ruled Italy's political life for over a decade. Bottom line is that what people say doesn't matter as much as what people do, and undoubtedly Dutch people gave Wilders the power to be part of the government and to act and talk the way he does. Before criticising him (he never hid his beliefs and views), it would be more useful to criticise yourselves first.

By Ko | 14 February 2012 12:57 PM

Ko, I have...and Wilders is still an idiot.

By CW | 14 February 2012 5:36 PM

Ko: I left the USA because of the sheer utter stupidity of the Republicans and the American over consumptive unbalanced lifestyle -fat greedy people. How's that for criticism of 'myself'? How's that for true honest introspection into my silly culture? Well, guess what Ko - all of the stupid asinine things that I left the US because of, the Dutch have adopted them and incorporated them into NL society!! Why Ko? why? do you even know yourself?
George Bush was simply stupid, an idiot. Wilders is an idiot filled with hatred, a pouty little boy with a big chip on his shoulder. And he is representing YOUR country.

By Bill | 15 February 2012 6:56 AM

@Phil - Like Wilders said "Stuff the EU", NL should leave now why they still can.

@Bill - U r a laugh a minute mate, i'm surprised u haven't falsely labelled me a racist yet like most lefties do

By Phil | 15 February 2012 10:18 AM

@Bill, This morning I called the Dutch Embassy in Sweden, where I live. I explained that the site is dangerous and discriminatory. The former because the open space lets the writer name persons he/she dislikes and give addresses. Personal harm can result. I know native Dutch citizens who agree. I shall email the embassy asap. I also wrote to the proper EU office. Most of my Dutch step-was murdered at Auschwitz, so I noticed this danger. It seems not to have been seen by others. This is, I hold, sufficient reason to take down the site.

By Husserl | 15 February 2012 12:58 PM

I'm abroad and the Netherlands' reputation has gone down hill as far as I'm concerned.
Who is next after the central and eastern Europeans? The French, British and Spanish?
We are all supposed to be equal and bound by the same laws. Where a man is born is literally an accident of birth and should not be held against him, or used to incite others against him.
People who break the law should be punished by the law, and the country they happened to be born in is irrelevant.

By Bill | 15 February 2012 2:52 PM

The creation of fighting, the incitement to hatred, and the poisoning of coexistence between Europeans, has always been one of the hallmarks of Nazism.

By zenplus | 16 February 2012 7:39 PM

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