Tag Archives: The Netherlands

Europol: Migrant smugglers arrests

The French Border Guard together with the French National Police (Police nationale) and the Dutch Royal Marechaussee (Koninklijke Marechaussee), supported by Europol and Eurojust, dismantled a large criminal network involved in migrant smuggling.

On the action day, law enforcement authorities arrested 23 suspected members of the criminal network (19 in France and 4 in the Netherlands), carried out five searches and seized firearms and vehicles. Irregular migrants discovered during the searches were brought to safety.

The criminal network is suspected of having facilitated the transportation of around 10 000 Afghan, Iranian, Iraqi-Kurdish and Syrian migrants from the French areas of Le Mans and Poitiers to the United Kingdom. The migrants were transported in life-threatening conditions, concealed in refrigerated – often-overcrowded – lorries (up to 20 migrants in a lorry).

The migrants paid up to €7 000 for the dangerous journey. The payments were collected via an undercover hawala banking system run by a suspect established in the Netherlands.

In total, the criminal gang is suspected to have gained around €70 million in profit from their illegal activities.

Europol supported this high-priority case by organising two operational meetings, facilitating the information exchange and providing tailored analytical support. On the action day, Europol deployed two experts on-the-spot, one in France and one in the Netherlands, to cross-check operational information in real-time. This case was also developed as part of EMPACT JOT Dunqett operational action.

Image: Europol courtesy

ALERT: The Hague assaillant at large

Dutch police is looking for suspect of The Hague stabbing a shop next to Grote Markt area, the historic center of the city. Police ask to avoid the area and be vigilant.

Police are searching for a man aged between 45 and 50, wearing a grey jogging tracksuit, who they believe may be behind the attack. 

Images on social media showed emergency services at the scene amid crowds of Black Friday shoppers.

The condition of those injured and the motive for the attack remain unclear.

30/11 11:35 AMENDMENT

The assailant of The Hague stabbing incident is still at large, Dutch public TV channel NOS reported.

Stabbing incident in The Hague

The are reports of people stabbed in a knife attack at a department store in a busy shopping street in The Hague, Dutch police say.

Police are searching for a man aged between 45 and 50, wearing a grey jogging tracksuit, who they believe may be behind the attack. Images on social media showed emergency services at the scene amid shoppers crowds of Black Friday.

The incident happened at the Hudson’s Bay store in the city’s historic Grote Markt or main market square area, local reports say.

Video posted to social media showed dozens of shoppers running in the busy shopping street.
At present there is no information about the number of injured and their condidtion released.
Police ask to stay vigilent, and avoid the area of the Grote Markt.

Dutch police has announced they “stopped reporting” on Twitter on stabbing incident, but the investigation would take its cause.

Dutch burqa ban challenges

Around one hundred people, mainly women, protested in  The Hague, The Netherlands on August 9 against “Burqa ban“, which came into effect in the on August, 1.

Around couple of dozens of women wore a niqab and carried plates with texts like “I am getting robbed of my freedom“, “Hands off my niqab”, “We are the victims of symbolized politics” and “Human rights are being violated” during the silent protest.

The demonstration took place at the Koekamp Park, and passed without incidents. The protesters demand the Dutch government to recall the law. A few secular human rights activists were present to demonstrate their solidarity and support to the Muslim believers.

According to the organizers, the law violates freedom of movement, freedom of religion and self-determination of women. In addition, they think that woman wearing a niqab/burqa are excluded from social life and that the law leads to polarization of society.

The new Dutch law partially prohibits face-covering clothing. It means that people are no longer allowed to enter public space such as hospitals, government buildings, schools and public transport with face-covering clothing, such as a burqa, niqab and balaclava.

The Party for Freedom (PvV) leader Geert Wilders sees it differently: as far as he is concerned, the Dutch government should deport all those burka/niqab groupies to Saudi Arabia, where then can practice their cult without risking to clash with democracy, fundamental rights and equality.

However the biggest challenge of Dutch government is that the overwhelming majority of these women were born in the Netherlands, and have Dutch nationality. Their mothers were eager to integrate, and they were not wearing Muslim veils.

When the law passed in June 2018, Upper House of the Parliament press officer Gert Riphagen estimated that it concerns between 200 and 400 burqa or niqab-wearing Muslims  in the Netherlands, out of a population of 17 million people.

The Dutch law is similar to bans in the other European countries: in France, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland and Denmark, some of which go further than the prohibition, but they impose fines: 1,000 Danish kroner (€100) in Denmark and  €150 in France.

In October 2018 the United Nations Human Rights Committee opposed the bans, explaining that it violates the human rights of Muslim women and risks “confining them to their homes.” However the opinion of international experts did not have any effect on the implementation of the legislation.

 

 

#Utrecht: assailant arrested

After a large-scale Dutch police operation suspect in Utrecht tram shooting Gökmen Tanis was arrested.
Around 10:45 on the 24 Oktoberplein in the city of Utrecht three people were shot dead in a tram, and five others were injured. Gokmen Tanis, a 37-year-old Turkish man, was detained several hours after the attack, however the details of the operation have not been revealed.

Tomorrow flags half-mast on all Dutch government buildings, following the instructions of the Prime Minister Mark Rutte.

#Utrecht: WANTED Turkey-born Gökman Tanis

Dutch  police asks you to look out for the 37 year old Gökman Tanis (born in Turkey) associated with the incident this morning at the in .

Do not approach him but call 0800-6070.

AMENDED:

Not nine but five people injured, according to police announcement.

ALERT! Utrecht terrorist incident

National Coordinator for Counter-terrorism and Security, Pieter-Jaap Aalbersberg, said that the shooting incident in  #Utrecht has all the characteristics of a terrorist attack. The threat level for the province of Utrecht has been raised to 5, the highest level in the Netherlands.

Mr.Aalbersberg is currently assuming one suspect, but does not exclude the possibility that there are more perpetrators. He did not want to say anything about the situation of the victims during the press conference. There is a massive search for the shooter.

A tram was fired this morning at 24 Octoberplein in Utrecht. There are several wounded, possibly one dead, the police say.

The municipality of Utrecht has therefore advised residents to stay indoors.

Mr.Aalbersberg said at a scheduled press conference that there has been a shooting at various locations. Earlier, the police had said that shooting was taking place in one place.

Searching for the perpetrator is a risky operation, Mr.Aalbersberg said. “The emergency services can now use all their energy to perform their task. That is why the threat level in Utrecht has been increased.” Raising the threat level is also intended to alert citizens.

AMENDED:

A gunman has opened fire inside a tram and at several other locations in University city of Utrecht, authorities say.

Several people have been injured and one is feared to have died, Dutch media reports.

Public transport has been stopped.

Police said the gunman is still at large.

May battles for orderly Brexit

Today British Prime Minister Theresa May will propose ruling out a no-deal Brexit in a bid to avoid a rebellion of the Westminster  threatening to take over control of the Article 50 implementation, The Sun and Daily Mail newspapers reported.

If however the Council agrees to extend Art 50 & May rules out leaving with no deal it means we are not leaving. This will mean a political civil war for decades” Gerard Batten MEP warned via his Twitter micro blog.

Dutch Prime minister Mark Rutte warned against no-deal scenario as “unacceptable“. Meanwhile the Dutch government informed it is in talks with more than  250 foreign companies luring them to move their operations from Britain to The Netherlands before the UK departure date from the EU 29th of March, Friday.

 

Man threatens to blow up Schiphol Airport

One of the Schiphol Airport, The Netherlands, departure halls has been cleared of passengers after a man claimed to have an explosive device.

A tweet from the airport’s official account said: Man threatens with a bomb in Departure Hall 3 at Schiphol.

Currently Departure hall 3 is being evacuated”.

More information will follow as soon as possible.”

 

Ambassador concerned with OPCW anti-Russian swing

Endowment of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) with attributive functions is directed against Russia, Permanent Representative to OPCW, Russian Ambassador to the Netherlands Alexander Shulgin.

“This will be directed against Russia. Western countries do not know themselves yet how this mechinsm will work, Shulgin said. “They want to do it in a format that will be maximally detrimental and painful for Russia,” he added.

It is not even clear to whom the OPCW Technical Secretariat will report its findings. Some say to the International Criminal Court, others say to the so-called impartial mechanism of investigating serious crimes in Syria which was established by the UN General Assembly,” Shulgin said. “It’s important for them to launch the process now, and the specifics will be developed later,” he continued.

The West’s main goal is to get a budget for this from the OPCW, the diplomat said. “They don’t care whether it will be 5 million, 2 million or 1 million. They want to launch the process. It’s clear that this will not be limited to Syria, the main effort will be directed against Russia,” Shulgin underlined. This will turn the organization into a “quasi-prosecution body,” the diplomat continued. “Will legal experts work there? This has nothing to do with the purpose of the Chemical Weapons Convention,” he concluded.

 

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