The criticism of Secretary of State Broekers-Knol continued today in the House of Representatives. In a debate, a number of parties continued the attack launched this weekend, following an AD interview on Afghan refugees.
CDA MP Kuik called it “a stupid interview” and “drinks talk”, Think leader Azarkan used the word “evil” and Ellemeet of GroenLinks qualified Broekers-Knol‘s offending statements as “false and misleading”.
The deputy secretary of state said in the AD on Saturday that there may be 100,000 Afghans want to come to the Netherlands and that such an exodus could lead to a “brain drain” in Afghanistan. A day later, after a storm of criticism, the VVD reigning woman said she should have chosen her words more carefully and that she should not have mentioned the “hypothetical number”.
Pattern of reluctance
The number “makes no sense at all and the Secretary of State knows that very well,” said GroenLinks MP Ellemeet. According to her, the statements fit into a pattern of reluctance to accommodate refugees.
SP MP Van Dijk filed a vote of no confidence against the demissionary Secretary of State for Justice. “She upsets the Chamber and juggles with numbers. What she does is scare people by mentioning large numbers.”
According to the SP, Broekers-Knol said in the interview that the Netherlands cannot handle 100,000 Afghans. While the Chamber adopted a proposal last summer (the Belhaj motion) stating that Afghans who worked for the Netherlands should be generously handled.
By the way, the motion of distrust against Broekers-Knol did not make it. SP, PVV, Party for Animals, Forum for Democracy, Think and BBB voted in favour; together accounted for 41 seats.
The PVV was also critical of Broekers-Tuber, but for different reasons than most other parties. MP Markuszower called the Secretary of State a fear of fear for taking back her statements. “If she says good, in a rare clear moment, she lets her whistle back.”
Azarkan van Denk thought it was special that both right and left were so critical. “You have to come from special houses if you want to harness everyone against you. In fact, no one is happy with this Secretary of State.”
Broekers-Knol reiterated in the debate that she regrets her Saturday statements. “I was tempted to have an if-then answer, I shouldn’t have made a hypothetical calculation.” She also assured the Chamber that it will perform the Belhaj motion “by letter and spirit”.
That Broekers-Knol has been seduced, the AD interviewer contradicts: