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Dutch report Dutch report
by Euro Reporter
2008-06-29 09:28:49
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Traffic jams

The number of traffic jams in the Netherlands could be halved by 2016 through a combination of extra motorway lanes, railways, and the introduction of a kilometer tax and getting people to work closer to home, the head of the government's mobility taskforce said on Tuesday.

'We have to find a new balance between living, working and mobility,' said Willem de Jager, who was seconded to the taskforce from Rabobank. 'If that works, we can cut jams by 50% within eight years.' For example, employees who are based more than 50 km from their place of work should be given much higher tax-free payments to move home. The current limit is 5000, but this could be upped to 25,000 over five years, De Jager said to reporters.

And then he drove his car home after being stuck for hours in traffic!


Asylum procedures

The justice ministry is to tighten the current procedures for asylum requests to make the process quicker and to try to stop people whose applications fail from going underground. 'Asylum seekers should know where they stand as soon as possible,' justice minister Ernst Hirsch Ballin and his deputy Nebahat Albayrak told MPs on Tuesday. 'Experience shows that deportation becomes more difficult the longer asylum seekers can delay their departure.'

The aim of the new procedures is to stop refugees being able to continually make new applications when old ones fail. The current initial application process is to be extended from five to eight working days to allow officials to carry out more thorough background checks. New arrivals will also go through a stringent health check in case they use their health as part of their claim. Last year 9,731 people applied for asylum in the Netherlands, of which some 7,100 were first-time claims.

Asylum seekers whose claim is rejected will be given one month to leave the country. If they refuse to leave voluntarily, they will be placed in secure accommodation. As an extra encouragement, they will be given 1750 to restart their lives or help with setting up a business in their home country. The ministers said they hoped this would stop failed asylum seekers disappearing out of the system.

What about the illegal immigrants?


A mega fine

A 21-year-old man from Honselersdijk ended up with fines totalling € 940 when police gave chase after he refused to stop for a routine control. He picked up fines for driving without insurance and a licence, driving against the traffic, driving on pavements and twice failing to stop at a stop sign.

He was probably worrying about the traffic jam!!!

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Emanuel Paparella2008-06-29 13:43:59
On the asylum procedures:

66% (hosting 9.2 refugees) are countries with an income of 2,000 or less per year; 29% (hosting 4 million refugees) are countries with an income between $2,000 to 10,000; 5% (796,000 refugees) are countries with an income of over $10,000.

The three countries with most refugees (over a million) are Pakistan (1,877,800 refugees), Syria (1,852,300 refugees), Iran (1,003,100 refugees). The Netherlands with the rest of the EU are of course among the 5% throwing money at the problem and expecting to be admired for it; after all they are the most liberal people in Europe, except in South Africa where they invented the word "apartheid."

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