Labour MPs on Wednesday urged home affairs ministry Liesbeth Spies to act according to her convictions and formally scrap draft legislation to ban the burqa and eradicate dual nationality.
Spies said in an interview with the Volkskrant newspaper earlier both issues are no longer priorities but plans to leave it up to parliament to decide what to do.
Spies, who is campaigning for the Christian Democratic party leadership, said: ‘Parliament wants to bin the dual nationality plans. And I would not shed a tear if that happened to the burqa ban either’.
The coalition alliance collapsed last month when Geert Wilders, leader of the anti-Islam PVV, pulled out after disagreeing with austerity measures. The dual nationality and burqa bans were PVV policies.
Until now Spies has defended the policies, describing the proposed ban on the face-covering Islamic government in January as ‘of very great importance’ to ensure open communication. She also rejected criticism of the dual nationality proposals from the Council of State, the government’s most senior advisory body.
The Volkskrant points out that the CDA has supported a ban on the burqa since 2005. In addition, restricting dual nationality has been on the party’s agenda since 2003.
However, a spokesman told the paper the contents of the 2010 election manifesto are paramount. There is no mention of restricting dual nationality or banning Islamic clothing in that document, the paper says.
Spies is one of four candidates for the CDA top job.
Last week, immigration minister Gerd Leers said he would no longer promote PVV causes within Europe. This means an end to campaigning for a higher age limit and income requirement in family reunion cases.