The Netherlands has been criticised by Amnesty International for continuing to put people awaiting deportation in solitary confinement and for failing to provide shelter to all people, including irregular migrants.
In addition, Amnesty Nederland director Eduard Nazarski told website Nu.nl that some Dutch political parties, like the VVD and CDA, are undermining key human values with their support for tearing up key treaties on refugees.
The human rights group issued a hard-hitting annual report on Wednesday, warning that there is an ‘insidious and creeping trend undermining human rights which has come from governments deliberately attacking, underfunding or neglecting institutions that have been set up to help protect our rights.’
2015 was a year of ‘global assault on people’s basic freedoms, with many governments brazenly breaking international law and deliberately undermining institutions meant to protect people’s rights’, the organisation said.
In its review of the Netherlands, Amnesty criticised the way solitary confinement is still used in Dutch immigration detention centres, both as a means of control and as a punitive measure.
The government also continued its attempts to deport rejected asylum-seekers to southern and central Somalia, including – under certain circumstances – to al-Shabaab-controlled areas, against guidelines issued by UNHCR, the UN refugee agency, the agency said.
The Dutch government has failed to implement the recommendation by the European Committee of Social Rights that all people, including irregular migrants, should unconditionally have access to shelter and basic necessities, Amnesty said.
The Dutch supreme court ruled late last year that councils do not have to provide bed and board to people who refuse to cooperate with their deportation.
In addition, new proposals to give the security services wider phone and internet tap rights effectively ‘legalise indiscriminate bulk collection of telecoms data’, Amnesty said.
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