Dutch news in brief, 20 April 2005

20th April 2005, Comments 0 comments

Lubbers gets high-powered post

Lubbers gets high-powered post

Former prime minister Ruud Lubbers will take up his new post as chairman of the supervisory council of the Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands at Petten in June. It is the largest energy research centre in the Netherlands. Lubbers recently resigned as UN High Commissioner for Refugees amid allegations he sexually harassed a female worker. He strenuously denied the claims but stepped down after losing the support of UN boss Kofi Annan.

Family to be buried Saturday

The funeral for the Hilversum family killed in a suicide-murder last weekend is to take place on Saturday. The family will be buried at the St. Barbara's cemetery, which is very near their home. Mayor Ernst Bakker placed an advertisement in the local newspaper on Wednesday extending sympathy to relatives. A 46-year-old traffic police officer shot and killed his wife and three sons before committing suicide on Friday night. Police are still trying to establish a motive.

MPs demand pro-constitution campaign

A majority of MPs urged the government on Wednesday to inject more money into a media campaign aimed at obtaining a positive outcome in the looming referendum on the EU Constitution. The Christian Democrat CDA, Liberal VVD and Labour PvdA are backing the 'yes' campaign. The MPs said the Cabinet should become more involved in promoting the constitution. The referendum will be held on 1 June.

Student drug use falls

The use of cannabis, ecstasy and amphetamines among school students has declined since 1996, the National Drug Monitor report revealed on Wednesday. However, an increasing number of teens, especially girls aged under 15, are drinking alcohol. The number of people requesting medical help for cocaine or soft-drug addiction has increased sharply. Medical staff are also treating more people for alcohol problems.

Nature reserve handed over

The Cabinet granted environment association Vereniging Natuurmonumenten a nature reserve of 4,300ha on the island of Schiermonnikoog on Wednesday, Environment Minister Cees Veerman said. The association was also awarded a EUR 100,000 annual subsidy to protect the habitat region. About half of the area is in the Wadden Sea, the other half is on land. The nature reserve was previously in the hands of the Department of Waterways and Public Works.

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Dutch news

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