Dutch news in brief, 7 February 2005

7th February 2005, Comments 0 comments

EU constitution has 30pc support

EU constitution has 30pc support

The European Union constitution would be backed by ut 30 percent of the Dutch people who plan to vote in a referendum later this year, a survey has found. Almost 80 percent of Dutch voters said they would probably cast a vote in the plebiscite, a relatively large figure for a national vote. Of these, half are unsure about the constitution and 20 percent are opposed, the website regering.nl said. The referendum, to be held in April or May, will give non-binding advice to the Dutch Parliament. On a European-wide basis, a European Commission survey has indicated 49 percent support for the constitution.

360 TB infections diagnosed

A large-scale investigation in Zeist has found that some 360 people have been infected with the tuberculosis bacteria. A total of 22,000 people were examined last week after a supermarket employee was diagnosed with a very infectious form of TB in November 2004. The 360 people infected with the bacteria have not contracted the actual illness, but will still need to undergo a six-month course of antibiotics. The final results of the testing will be known on Friday. Another 5,000 people who underwent x-rays will receive the results in two to three week times.

Prosecution chief resigns

The chief of the Dutch public prosecution service  (OM), Joan de Wijkerslooth, will vacate the position on 1 June to become a criminal law professor at Leiden University. De Wijkerslooth has served the maximum six years allowed as head of the prosecution service. Attorney-general Harm Brouwer will be nominated to replace De Wijkerslooth as the boss of the College van Procureurs-generaal (Attorneys-General Council). He was appointed to the council in April 2004.

Call for special terrorist jails

The Populist LPF party has proposed setting up a prison entirely for terrorism suspects. MP Joost Eerdmans said special jails would prevent terrorists from continuing to operate by recruiting new Jihad volunteers. He said a report from the Dutch security service AIVD indicated that prisons are currently an "education institute". The LPF will submit its proposal to Parliament later this week.

Dutch helicopters find plane wreck

Dutch Apache helicopters found the wreckage on Saturday of an Afghan airline that crashed about 30km southeast of the capital Kabul. None of the 104 passengers and crew survived, the Afghan Defence Ministry said. The wreck was located in mountainous terrain at a height of about 3,000m. The Kam Air Boeing 737 was on route from Herat in the west of Afghanistan to Kabul when it disappeared off the radar. Shortly beforehand, the pilot requested permission to divert to Peshawar in Pakistan due to a snowstorm. Nothing more was heard from the plane.

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Dutch news

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