Asylum-seekers were transferred to Greece, despite continuing concern about their lack of access to a fair asylum-determination procedure there. Accelerated asylum-determination procedures, detentions of asylum-seekers and migrants, the extension of pre-trial detention and the denial of legal assistance during police questioning of criminal suspects gave rise to concern.
Following a court ruling in May, the government resumed transfers of asylum-seekers to Greece for determination of their asylum claims under the "Dublin II" Regulation, despite serious concerns about asylum-determination procedures and detention conditions in Greece.
In June, the government proposed amendments to the Aliens Act. If implemented, many asylum claims would be processed within eight days, including in complex cases. In July, the UN Human Rights Committee (HRC) expressed concern that existing "accelerated procedures", allowing determination of asylum applications within 48 working hours, and the proposed eight-day procedure, might not allow asylum-seekers to substantiate their claims adequately, putting them at risk of forcible return.
According to government figures, thousands of irregular migrants and asylum-seekers were taken into immigration detention centres during the year and held on a remand regime. Those detained included vulnerable individuals, such as trafficking and torture survivors, with little consideration given to alternatives to detention. Even unaccompanied minors, whom the government asserted had no legitimate claim to remain or reside in the Netherlands, continued to be detained.
Some people whose immigration detention began in 2008 were held for more than 12 months, as Dutch law provides no maximum time limit on immigration detention.
In March, the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights expressed concern at measures adopted by the authorities with the stated aim of combating terrorism, including: vague and broad definitions of crimes that may lead to unjustifiable restrictions on human rights and freedoms; provisions under the Investigation and Prosecution of Terrorist Offences Act permitting detention on mere suspicion of a "terrorist crime"; and an extension of maximum pre-trial detention from 90 days to two years for people charged with "terrorism offences".
The HRC expressed concern about the denial of legal counsel for criminal suspects during police questioning and possible pre-trial detention periods of up to two years. It criticized certain provisions of the Witness Identity Protection Act, which allow the defence to be excluded during the questioning of witnesses whose identity has been withheld from the defence for "national security reasons". It also expressed concern about the power of local mayors to issue administrative "disturbance orders", allegedly to combat terrorism, without judicial authorization or oversight of the measures imposed under such orders.
The Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights expressed concern about racist, anti-Semitic and other intolerant tendencies in the Netherlands, notably intolerance against Muslims.
In June, legislation was passed obliging municipalities from 1 January 2010 to collect data on discriminatory incidents, and provide access to a support service for those who wished to report discrimination.
The Curaçaoan and Dutch authorities have violated the rights of Venezuelans seeking international protection in Curaçao, Amnesty International said today in the new report, Still no Safety: Venezuelans denied protection in Curaçao. The organization documented 22 cases of Venezuelans, including children, who have been subjected to human rights violations such as automatic detention under inhumane conditions, ill-treatment, family separations and the denial of their right to seek asylum.
Authorities in the Caribbean island of Curaçao, part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, must protect people who are fleeing the human rights crisis in nearby Venezuela and put an end to the appalling conditions they face upon reaching Curaçao, said Amnesty International in a report published today.
As the Trump administration prepares to further expand the US’s lethal drone program, increasing the risk of civilian casualties and unlawful killings, Amnesty International is calling on four European countries …
The organization has released a ground-breaking review of thousands of pages of internal company documents and witness statements, as well as Amnesty International’s own archive from the period.
International protection of human rights is in danger of unravelling as short-term national self-interest and draconian security crackdowns have led to a wholesale assault on basic freedoms and rights, warned Amnesty International as it launched its annual assessment of human rights around the world. “Your rights are in jeopardy: they are being treated with utter contempt by many governments around the world,” said Salil Shetty, Secretary General of Amnesty International.
This has been a devastating year for those seeking to stand up for human rights and for those caught up in the suffering of war zones. Governments pay lip service to the importance of protecting civilians. And yet the world's politicians have miserably failed to protect those in greatest need. Amnesty International believes that this can and must finally change.
KINGDOM OF THE NETHERLANDS Head of state Queen Beatrix Head of government Mark Rutte The newly elected coalition government proposed criminalizing unlawful residency and instituting a partial ban on the …
Head of state Queen Beatrix Head of government Jan Peter Balkenende Death penalty abolitionist for all crimes Population 16.6 million Life expectancy 79.8 years Under-5 mortality (m/f) 6/5 per 1,000 …
Athlete and activist Colin Kaepernick has been honored with Amnesty International’s Ambassador of Conscience Award for 2018, the human rights organization announced today.
Messages from Edward Snowden, Ai Weiwei and Pussy Riot will be broadcast across the internet by AdBlock and Amnesty International on the World Day against Cyber Censorship, 12 March 2016.