Admit mistakes, Schiphol memorial hears

8th November 2005, Comments 0 comments

8 November 2005, AMSTERDAM — "If mistakes were made, this must be admitted by politicians and those in charge," Gifty Wadieh said during a memorial service at Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport on Tuesday.

8 November 2005

AMSTERDAM — "If mistakes were made, this must be admitted by politicians and those in charge," Gifty Wadieh said during a memorial service at Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport on Tuesday.

She was speaking on behalf of the relatives of the 11 people killed during a fire in the airport detention centre in October. All the victims were rejected asylum seekers awaiting deportation from the Netherlands. Wadieh's husband was killed in the blaze.

Questioning the policy of locking up asylum seekers, she said she thought the Netherlands was a country with safety precautions and she hoped a full explanation for the tragedy would emerge. She also expressed the hope lessons would be learned as a result of the fire.

The Netherlands paid to fly in dozens of relatives of the victims for the commemoration service. Five coffins were on display during the ceremony at the Jet Support hangar which is situated in the same part of Amsterdam Airport as the detention centre. The remains of the other six victims had already been taken home.

Justice Minister Piet Hein Donner and Immigration Minister Rita Verdonk addressed the gathering. The ministers spoke of the suffering of the victims, their relatives and the survivors.

They also expressed sympathy for those who had risked their own lives to save others.

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2005]

Subject: Dutch news

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