Expatica news

Dutch news in brief – 9 July 2004

Protest against Israeli wall at international court

Dozens of protestors demonstrated outside the International Court of Justice in The Hague on Friday against the Israeli security wall. The court ruled that the West Bank barrier is illegal and should be dismantled. It said the United Nations should consider what action should now be taken. Members of the initiative group Stop the Wall! and the Palestinian Campaign Against the Apartheid Wall  demonstrated outside the court, as did about 10 orthodox Jews who were also protesting against the wall. Israel claims the wall is necessary to safeguard its citizens and claims it is a domestic, rather than an international issue.

Anja murder to be reconstructed

Amsterdam Appeals Court rule on Friday it will stage a reconstruction in September of the murder of Anja Joos, who was kicked to death outside a city supermarket in October 2003. During Friday’s hearing, the prosecution also amended its list of charges, admitting it made an error in the trial hearing. The court sentenced two main suspects earlier this year to three years and 18-months jail respectively, but the prosecution and seven of the eight main suspects appealed.

Protocol change for national anthem

The Dutch national anthem, the Wilhelmus, may in future be played on official occasions even if a member of the royal family is not present, Radio Netherlands reported. Queen Beatrix has reportedly agreed to a change in the protocol, allowing in future the national anthem to be played when the prime minister or the defence minister greets foreign guests. The move comes after outrage was expressed in June when it emerged that the Queen permitted the national anthem to be played for foreign guests only when she or another member of the royal house was present.

Ministry confirms school holiday crackdown

The Education Ministry has confirmed the type of measures it will take against secondary schools that are giving their students too much free time. The schools will first be given a warning and if that falls on deaf ears, they can be docked government funding. The measures come after concern was raised as research indicated that some schools gave students 17 weeks in holidays and free time each year. The Education Inspectorate said combined with holidays and exam times, most schools were giving their students 32 weeks of lessons, rather than the required 40.

[Copyright Expatica News 2004]

Subject: Dutch news