By: Sara Kovač / Nova24tv
“The Dutch MEP Sophie in ‘t Veld headed the EU delegation that visited Slovenia recently to investigate the state of the rule of law in the country. She is also demanding sanctions against Poland and Hungary. Will she also investigate the Dutch government after today’s events?” a Twitter profile, reporting on the countries of the Visegrad group, wrote in a post on Sunday, after the footage from a banned rally against the Covid-19 measures and the brutal police intervention against the participating protesters, came to light. In addition to the scenes from Amsterdam seen in the video, several people have called on the commissioners – Vera Jourova, Didier Reynders and others, who have stepped up the pressure against the Visegrad countries in the past, to also do something this time.
Let us remind you that the Dutch MEP, Sophie in ‘t Veld, came to Slovenia as the head of the fact-finding mission (due to the wishes of MEP and SD party president, Tanja Fajon, and the other members of the opposition), to inquire about the state of the rule of law in Slovenia. Among the members of the European Parliament who supported the resolution that was subsequently prepared by members of the fact-finding mission and presented to the European Parliament were MEPs Tanja Fajon and Milan Brglez from the ranks of the SD party, and Irena Joveva and Klemen Grošelj from the ranks of the LMŠ party. But judging by lots of video clips, and also by the events unfolding in the Netherlands – from the murder of a journalist and a lawyer to the fact that protesters openly threatened the police with weapons, and, last but not least, the police officers’ brutal treatment of the protesters, perhaps in ‘t Veld should instead investigate the state of the rule of law in her own country. Namely, nothing like that is happening in Slovenia.
Aggressive riots against the measures adopted to limit the spread of Covid-19 have been going on for a while now in Amsterdam. One of them also happened on Sunday, when the police interrupted a banned rally against the measures adopted to control the spread of the novel coronavirus and tried to disband it. According to the Dutch news agency ANP, around two thousand people gathered in front of the Rijksmuseum in the city centre. Police officers also used force in their actions against the violators, and just how brutal things got is clearly visible from the video footage that has now made rounds on the internet, where it is clear that police dogs were also used against the protesters. In the Netherlands, a strict closure of public life is currently in place due to the rapid spread of the omicron variant of the coronavirus, and the restrictions will last until at least mid-January.
Will the EU take action?
The European Parliament’s Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) also travelled to Bulgaria four months ago to investigate police brutality against the protesters there. In November, the European Parliament discussed police brutality in the Czech Republic. Will the European Union also take action against the Netherlands because of what happened yesterday?
The response of the Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs
The Hungarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs also commented on the police officers’ brutal treatment of the protesters. Foreign Minister Szijjártó Péter said that “many people certainly still remember the times when Western European politicians and the so-called human rights non-governmental organisations acted as if the end of the world was near due to the emergency restrictions in place because of Covid-19, and how media outlets wrote about ‘the spread of racism in Hungary,’ after a group of fans threw torches and firecrackers at the football field.” He added that “now, Western Europe has had quite a productive weekend: brutal police with its dogs in the Netherlands. We are still waiting for the outrage of the international liberal media, Vera Jourova, Didier Reynders, and others…”
The number of demonstrations that have turned into violent riots and the raging of hooligans has risen dramatically in the Netherlands in the last few months. In November, police even had to intervene with shots, injuring at least two people, including the police officers. And given that, on the left, the Netherlands is often cited as an example of democracy, as a nuclear country, which is light years ahead of us with its political and democratic culture, it is unusual that this is what policing in the “core European Union” looks like. However, when the Slovenian police disbanded the rally in Ljubljana with measures that were not even close to the brutality of the Dutch police, the leftists “convened” on the show Tarča (Target) on the national RTV and tried to sell the public the story about the brutal Slovenian police, led by Anton Olaj, Director-General of the Slovenian Police, and Aleš Hojs, Minister of the Interior. You can see just how brutal the Dutch police actually were on the footage circulating on the internet.