Human Rights Watch has branded Dutch immigration policy as discriminatory toward Moroccans and Turks (read: Muslims). The Dutch government, while publicly dismissing the allegation, must be wondering what gave them away.
Did Rita Verdonk give the appearance of being more than merely ‘tough’ on immigration? Did she carry out overtly anti-Muslim policies?
Yes, actually. She was that kind of prime minister. Er, wait, Jan Peter Balkenende was prime minister. Verdonk was immigration and immolation. Easy to get them confused.
Human Rights Watch may be a few years late, but its analysis is correct. The group cites the language test Verdonk launched in 2006. Would-be immigrants must pass this test in their home countries before they can re-unite with their families in the Netherlands. And these tests are only applied to people from developing countries.
Because the largest group of recent immigrants in the Netherlands are the Turks and Morrocans, they are de facto the ones most affected. Americans may draw the comparison with the ‘literacy’ tests which were once used to deny voting rights to black people.
It would be more honest for the Dutch government just to bar new Muslim immigrants, and admit that this is the will of the majority. But using bureaucracy with tests and fees gives the whole thing a veneer of civility and correctness. Just as it did in Alabama.
Click here for news story on the Human Rights report
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