Dutch PM: hate is not the answer
‘Hate is not the answer’ said Dutch prime minister Jan Peter Balkenende in a speech at the American embassy in The Hague this afternoon marking the fifth anniversary of the terrorist attacks in the US on 11 September 2001
.‘We are thinking of all those who are mourning their loved ones today. Their pain silences us. Through their bitter experience we realise once more what really matters: life, love, freedom,’ said Balkenende who based his speech on one of the 13,000 personal stories included in the ‘9/11 Digital Archive’. Balkenende said the story of the young New Yorker Paul who lost his sister in the World Trade Center had made a deep impression on him, especially the words: ‘I must teach my children not to hate as others do.’
Balkenende: ‘Terrorists preach hate, their house is built on fear. We preach freedom and tolerance, our house is built on respect for others and dialogue.’ The prime minister said terrorism affects perople around the world, irrespective of their culture or beliefs, referring to attacks in Europe, Asia and Africa over the past few years.
US ambassador Roland Arnall thanked the Dutch people for their gestures of support for the family and friends of the victims of the attacks. After the ceremony in the garden of the embassy, Balkenende spent some time talking to children from the American School.
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