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Wednesday 18 November 2020
It is still too early to say if the current coronavirus rules can be relaxed during the Christmas and New Year period, prime minister Mark Rutte told a press conference on Tuesday evening. Although the infection rate is dropping, the current indications are that it will be mid January before the number of positive tests is below 1,200 per day and intensive care admissions below three per day – which are crucial to relax the rules, Rutte and health minister… More >
Coronavirus infections in the Netherlands have declined for the third week in a row, but at a slower rate than in the first week of the extra lockdown measures. The latest weekly update from the public health agency RIVM recorded a 13.6% drop in the weekly total, from 43,621 to 37,706. The positive test rate also declined slightly from 14.5% to 13.8%, still far above the proportion of below 1% during the summer. Ministers are expected to confirm on Tuesday… More >
Members of radical farmers group Farmers Defence Force are protesting in The Hague on Tuesday, this time to show their opposition to new zoning laws and the government’s buy-out plans to cut farm-related pollution. The protest led to delays on some roads early on Tuesday morning as farmers headed for The Hague by tractor, and the city centre has been closed off by the army to stop the tractors getting through. Some tractors were, however, did make it into the… More >
Threatening letters containing an unnamed powder have been sent to two separate offices of the DPG media empire and a hospital in Rotterdam, police confirmed on Tuesday. Letters containing the powder were first discovered at a DPG Media office in Best in Brabant and then at the company’s main offices in Amsterdam. A similar letter was also delivered to the Ikazia hospital in Rotterdam. DPG Media is a Belgian media group which owns the AD, Parool, Volkskrant and Trouw newspapers… More >
When it comes to the rise in house prices, Groningen is the new Amsterdam, according to real estate data company Calcasa. House prices rose by an average of 11.6% in the northern capital in the previous quarter – the biggest increase in all towns and cities where over 5,000 homes changed hands. By contrast Amsterdam, where prices have consistently risen more than elsewhere, was bottom of the ranking with an average rise of 5.7%. One reason for the rising popularity… More >
The extra coronavirus restrictions introduced on November 4 are expected to be lifted as planned this week despite the fall in cases slowing down in recent days. Prime minister Mark Rutte and health minister Hugo de Jonge will give an update on the pandemic response at a press conference on Tuesday evening, after the cabinet formally decides on the next steps. The stricter rules, which included closing all museums, libraries, cinemas and zoos, and limiting public gatherings to two people,… More >
The government is set to approve ‘cremation by water’ as a new way of disposing of dead bodies in addition to burial and cremation, home affairs minister Kajsa Ollongren has said. Earlier this year, the national health council recommended that the new method which involves dissolving the body via alkaline hydrolysis be added to the list of legal methods. Also known as resomation, or water cremation, the process is a safe and sustainable alternative to burial or cremation by fire,… More >
New legislation which will make it an offence for parents to buy alcoholic drinks for children under the age of 18 will not come into effect until July 2021, junior health minister Paul Blokhuis has told MPs. The new rules will also make it an offence for friends to buy alcohol in shops or bars on behalf of their younger peers. Research has shown that 97% of teenagers who drink are provided with alcohol via friends and family, Blokhuis told… More >
Street wardens in Amsterdam, Zandvoort and Alkmaar are among the council officials in 10 towns and cities nationwide who will be equipped with batons to protect themselves in a year long experiment. The experiment has been sanctioned by justice minister Ferd Grapperhaus after a long campaign by wardens who say they are being exposed to violence while going about their daily duties. There have been several high profile cases of wardens, known as boas in Dutch, being attacked since the… More >
Cash-strapped theatres and cultural institutions are to get a €482m bailout to generate work in the arts sector, culture minister Ingrid van Engelshoven has told MPs. The measure, which comes in the wake of an earlier package worth €300m, is separate from general wages and bridging support schemes, and brings the total investment in the sector to €1.6bn. The second package, to be rolled out in the first six months of next year, is meant to generate work for directors,… More >
Bomb disposal experts searching for explosives near the A15 motorway have found the remains of a British soldier who is thought to have been killed in the aftermath of Operation Market Garden. The body was found near Bemmel, in the area where the battle to liberate the north of the Netherlands took place in September 1944. The attempt ultimately failed, with great loss of life among the allied forces. Some 35,000 British, US and Polish forces were dropped by parachute… More >
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