Labour, Liberals call for fewer embassies

The Netherlands must reduce the number of embassies and diplomatic missions it operates abroad, the Labour and Liberal parties’ foreign affairs spokesmen said on Tuesday, the Volkskrant reports.

Martijn van Dam and Atzo Nicolaï say the development of a major European foreign affairs ministry removes the need for the Netherlands to operate diplomatic missions all over Europe.
Van Dam also asked foreign affairs minister Maxime Verhagen why the country has nine missions in the Balkan countries.
And Nicolaï called for cuts in embassy representation in countries such as Rwanda where Dutch aid spending is limited.
The Netherlands operates 160 diplomatic missions abroad, the paper says. Verhagen has already announced 100 jobs will go and says others will follow in the next round of government spending cuts.

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