MPs concerned over Dutch safety
15 March 2004 , AMSTERDAM — The Dutch Parliament expressed concern on Sunday for the safety of the Netherlands after Islamic terror group Al Qaeda purportedly claimed responsibility for the Madrid bombings.
15 March 2004
AMSTERDAM — The Dutch Parliament expressed concern on Sunday for the safety of the Netherlands after Islamic terror group Al Qaeda purportedly claimed responsibility for the Madrid bombings.
A suspected Al Qaeda videotape claimed the bombings were in revenge for Spain's support of the US and its allies. The Netherlands is on record for giving political, but not military support to the US-led invasion of Iraq.
Furthermore, there are about 1,300 Dutch troops stationed in the south of Iraq on peacekeeping duties.
But the government coalition parties Christian Democrat CDA, Liberal VVD and Democrat D66 said that the Madrid attacks will not influence the Dutch peacekeeping mission or its possible extension. "We must not bend to terrorism," D66 MP Bert Bakker said.
Despite the stance, all three parties urged the Cabinet to remain vigilant in case extra security measures were needed in the Netherlands, newspaper De Telegraaf reported.
Despite additional security measures around the Spanish embassy and consulate in The Hague and Amsterdam respectively, the Interior Ministry has said no extra security steps have been taken.
Meanwhile, hundreds of people marched in Amsterdam to Dam Square in protest against terrorism and to express their safety concerns on Sunday. The march comes after a rally was held at the Spanish embassy in The Hague on Friday night.
[Copyright Expatica News 2004]
Subject: Dutch news