Tuesday 28 September 2021

Extra security for Rutte amid fears of growing underworld threat

Extra security for Rutte amid fears of growing underworld threat

Caretaker prime minister Mark Rutte has been given extra personal protection amid concern that gangsters may be plotting to kidnap him. The Telegraaf reported that intelligence agencies acted after ‘spotters’ – people hired by criminal gangs to prepare the ground for an attack or kidnap – were observed in Rutte’s vicinity. The public prosecution service and intelligence agencies would not say whether Rutte’s security detail had been stepped up, but other media organisations including NOS and nu.nl confirmed the reports... More >




Decline in coronavirus cases slowing down

The average number of positive coronavirus tests increased slightly on Monday for the first time in more than two weeks. Another 1,411 cases were recorded by the public health agency RIVM, a 4.6% increase on last Monday’s figure. The percentage of positive tests is unchanged at 7.4%. The seven-day average went up from 1,668 to 1,673, having fallen by 13% since last week. It is the first increase since September 10, when around 2,500 cases were being recorded per day,... More >




So how was your Coronavirus pass weekend?

This weekend, widespread use of the coronavirus pass came into effect in the Netherlands, and people now need to show a QR card and ID to go to a club or sit inside a bar or restaurant. Clubs are open (up to midnight) after being closed for 18 months and bars are busy again. So how did it go? The Parool reported that the Dutch capital was ‘buzzing’. ‘I talked to people who hadn’t danced or heard loud music in... More >


Kaag breaks coalition blockade on CU

D66 leader Sigrid Kaag has said she is prepared to resume talks with six parties – including the ChristenUnie (CU) – in a bid to break the impasse in the formation of the next cabinet. Kaag had earlier ruled out working with the CU because of fundamental differences on medical-ethical issues such as euthanasia, abortion and embryo research. The two parties agreed not to legislate in those areas when they joined the last coalition in 2017, but Kaag was unwilling... More >



Fewer tourists head for the Netherlands

The Dutch tourism and convention board NBTC is expecting 5.4 million foreign visitors will come to the Netherlands last year, which would be down just over a quarter on the 2020 figure. ‘The forecasts sketch a more dramatic picture than we had earlier this year,’ NBTC director Jos Vranken said. ‘This is because of the continuing restrictions on travel and the coronavirus measures which have been in place for almost the whole year.’ ‘This means tourism and business related visits... More >


Sacked minister stands down as MP

Christian Democrat MP Mona Keijzer, sacked as junior economic affairs minister at the weekend after telling the Telegraaf newspaper she had doubts about the coronavirus pass system, has quit national politics altogether. Keijzer, who will remain a member of the party, said she would stand down as an MP to ensure she did not become a divisive element within the party. ‘The Christian Democratic way is too dear to me for that,’ she said in a declaration on Twitter. Keijzer... More >



Van Barneveld denies fixing darts match

Former world darts champion Raymond van Barneveld dropped out of a tournament last year after he was accused of deliberately throwing a match, according to an NOS podcast. The online tournament last April, ‘A Night at the Darts’, was brought under supervision after the 54-year-old lost 5-0 to Martin Adams. In the hours before the match around €60,000 was bet on a win for Adams, who was initially the underdog, causing the betting odds to shift in his favour. Other... More >


More Asian hornets spotted in NL

Asian hornets have been spotted in 16 separate locations in the Netherlands this year, after first being recorded here in 2017. The hornet, which is almost twice the size of a normal wasp, has been seen across the country, including in Drenthe, Zuid-Holland, Zeeland, Noord-Brabant and Limburg, said hotline Stop Invasieve Exoten (stop invasive exotics). The hornet (vespa velutina), which kills and eats honey bees and other insects, has been on the EU’s list of invasive species since August 2016.... More >



Blackstone pays no tax on Dutch property

American investment house Blackstone, which has built up a Dutch housing portfolio valued at €793m since 2019, pays no tax on its real estate in the Netherlands, the Volkskrant reported on Saturday. The company uses a variety of limited and holding companies via Luxembourg, Jersey and the Cayman Islands to ‘lose’ its profits and make a loss on its Dutch venture, hence the zero tax bill, the paper said. The loss in the Netherlands has been created by interest charges... More >









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