Having two passports should no longer be regarded as a problem in the Netherlands, says the government’s scientific research council WRR.
‘At a time of globalisation, having two passports is increasingly a fact of life,’ the WRR says in a report out today. ‘Not just for new Dutch nationals but for Dutch emigrants as well.’
Currently, people taking Dutch nationality have to formally renounce their original nationality, unless forbidden to do so by law.
Earlier this year, there was a major row in parliament when Geert Wilders, leader of the anti-Islam party PVV, accused two ministers of having divided loyalties because they have two nationalities.
‘At a time when people move around so much, the demand [to give up your original passport] is not realistic, not necessary and not desirable,’ researcher Pauline Meurs told the Volkskrant.
The council also stresses that a new concept of ‘identification with the Netherlands’ is needed to replace the idea of a ‘national identity’. There is no such thing as ‘one type of Dutchman’, the council said.
The council also recommended against the over-use of generalisations, which is often counter-productive. ‘People should be seen as individuals, not members of an ethnic group,’ the WRR said.
‘The term ‘non-native’ (allochtoon) has become a something you cannot escape from,’ researcher Dennis Broeders told the Volkskrant. ‘One it has been applied to you, you cannot get away from it.’
The report will be presented to justice minister Ernst Hirsch Ballin on Monday.
The WRR’s recommendations:
* Replace the concept of ‘national identity’ with that of ‘identification with the Netherlands’
* Avoid the use of the words ‘native’ (autochtoon) and non-native (allochtoon)
* No positive discrimination
* Allow double nationality
* Support role models
* Encourage children of different ethnic groups to school together
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