Dutch parliament asks for more political pressure on Myanmar
November 30, 2016
Amsterdam, Netherlands — Yesterday, the Dutch parliament voted in favor of a resolution put forth by MP Tunahan Kuzu (DENK). In the resolution, the parliament recognizes that approximately 800.000 Rohingya in Myanmar are not recognized as civilians by the Myanmar government. The resolution asks from the Dutch government to increase its political pressure on Myanmar – via the European Union and the United Nations – to improve the situation of the Rohingya.
When the resolution was submitted on November 24th the Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs Bert Koenders immediately underlined it’s importance. He stated that there is a “serious problem” in regards to the Rohingya in Myanmar, something he witnessed with his own eyes when he visited the country earlier this year.
The direct consequence of the resolution is that the members of parliament have now officially given the ministry of foreign affairs the task of increasing the political pressure on Myanmar via the European Union and the United Nations. Over the past few years, sanctions against Myanmar have been weakened or even cancelled and trade missions have increased, also by the Netherlands. This obviously did not help to improve the situation of the Rohingya. In fact, currently the world is witnessing the worst violence against the Muslims in Myanmar since 2012.
“The fact that this resolution was supported immediately by Minister Koenders and had now also been accepted by the parliament is good news,” says Nourdeen Wildeman, president of the as-Salaamah wal’Adaalah Foundation from the Netherlands. This foundation was launched in 2013 with the sole purpose of supporting the Rohingya in their plight via humanitarian aid, awareness projects and political lobby. “However, this is only the first step towards specific actions which should be performed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. We will closely monitor the follow-up of this resolution by the Dutch government.”
The anti-islamic ‘Freedom Party’ of Geert Wilders voted against the resolution.