Anti-coronavirus measure activist and lawyer Jeroen Pols has won a court case against the Dutch state to ensure his family can return from Tanzania without having to produce negative coronavirus tests, broadcaster NOS said on Thursday.
Jeroen Pols asked for an emergency court hearing following the government’s decision to make a negative PCR coronavirus test result mandatory for everyone entering the country from December 29.
The court in The Hague ruled that Pols’ family can return from the high risk country on January 3 without a negative test and ordered the state to pay the legal costs.
The judge said the family have the right to protest about being forced to undergo a PCR test against their will. ‘Introducing such a requirement for citizens of the Netherlands who want to return home requires legal grounding, and this is not covered by article 53 or 54 of the public health act,’ the judge is quoted as saying.
The fact that further spreading of the virus needs to be tackled urgently is not up for discussion, the judge said. ‘But such a far reaching obligation as this, which concerns physical integrity, requires a concrete legal basis.’
Law professor Jan Brouwer told NOS the verdict may have implications for other cases because others who object to being forced to take a test will be able to use this ruling in their own legal action.
It could be, he told NOS, that the Dutch policy may have to be revised.
However, a spokesman for the court told the Telegraaf that the verdict only applies to the three people in question and does not mean that ‘everyone coming from abroad can wave the verdict around and refuse to undergo a test.’
The ruling has not yet been published online and DutchNews.nl has not been able to verify the authenticity of the quoted legal text or the context.