Rutte pleads to Chamber not to block curfew

The House of Representatives still thinks that setting up a curfew to prevent the spread of coronavirus is a bad idea. Several parties consider it to be too heavy a tool that undermines the freedom of citizens too much. Yet Prime Minister Rutte thinks that a curfew might be necessary. In a debate he begged the Chamber not to block the drug.

In November the Chamber already adopted a motion from Geert Wilders (PVV) who spoke against the curfew. The entire opposition and government party D66 supported that motion. Despite this, Prime Minister Rutte announced last night that the Cabinet had asked the Outbreak Management Team (OMT) for an emergency advice on curfew.

In the House of Representatives, Rutte called on Parliament this afternoon not to rule out the possibility of a curfew. โ€œI also hate to think about it at all, but dont throw away instruments! That luxury is not there right now.โ€

He pointed out the figures and images from Britain and Ireland, where the number of infections explosively increases due to the British variant of the virus, with disastrous consequences for care. This much more contagious British variant will also prevail in the Netherlands, according to the expectations of the Cabinet. That is why curfew is still being considered. Rutte wants to come back to it next week when the OMT emergency advice comes in. According to an opinion from experts to the Cabinet, it would be a curfew from 8 oclock in the evening to 4 oclock in the morning.

Disproportionate

In the Chamber debate PVV, D66, GroenLinks, Party voor de Dieren and SGP made it clear that they are not happy with the possible curfew. According to PVV leader Wilders, it may lead to a greater sense of urgency among the population. โ€œBut before that, this remedy is disproportionate.โ€

โ€œ I say to the Cabinet: dont do it now,โ€ said D66 Group Chairman Rob Jetten about curfew. He thinks its unenforced because police and boas are already too busy. Only if there are London states where hospitals are now full of corona patients, D66 wants to consider the possibility.

GroenLinks believes, like PVV and D66, that the cabinet should first put an end to the many flights that still land daily from the United Kingdom at Schiphol Airport. There are 20 more a day. โ€œThen curfew is not the first thing I think of,โ€ said Groenlinks leader Jesse Klaver.

The Cabinet announced today that all UK travellers must undergo a quick test before boarding the plane or ferry. Only if it turns out negative will they be allowed to travel further. It also remains the obligation of a recent negative PCR test.

VVD and CDA have less difficulty with the possibility of curfew. CDA Group Chairman Pieter Heerma believes that the measure cannot now be ruled out. โ€œDespite the dilemmas, I find it quite defensible.โ€ Group chairman Klaas Dijkhoff of the VVD calls it โ€œlogicalโ€ for the cabinet to look at the curfew.