‘An irresponsible provocation’ was how foreign minister Frans Timmermans described North Korea’s third underground nuclear test, which was carried out today. He went on to say that it ‘undermined stability and security in the region’. The Minister expressed the belief that the regime in Pyongyang was isolating itself even further with this test, adding that it was characteristic of this regime that it was spending so much money on its nuclear programme while the North Korean people were going hungry.
Foreign minister Frans Timmermans has expressed concern at the findings of Bulgaria’s investigation into the deadly attack on a bus carrying Israeli tourists in Burgas in July 2012. Earlier today Bulgaria concluded that the military wing of Hezbollah was responsible. Mr Timmermans sees this as confirmation of the Netherlands’ position that Hezbollah is a terrorist organisation.
The Netherlands is working with Germany to organise an international conference on restoring Syria’s water supply. The aim is to restore the supply of drinking water to the population in northern Syria as soon as the situation allows.
Her Majesty the Queen announced her abdication today. His Royal Highness the Prince of Orange is the successor to the throne.
Zoals u allen weet, hoop ik over enkele dagen mijn 75ste verjaardag te vieren. Ik ben dankbaar dat het mij gegund is deze dag in goede gezondheid tegemoet te gaan. Aan het éinde van dit jaar zullen wij herdenken dat ons land tweehonderd jaar geleden een koninkrijk werd, waarmee in onze geschiedenis een nieuw tijdperk aanbrak. Het samenvallen van deze twee bijzondere gebeurtenissen is voor mij de aanleiding geweest te besluiten dit jaar uit mijn ambt terug te treden. Het lijkt mij een goed moment om deze stap, die ik al enige jaren overweeg, nu daadwerkelijk te nemen.
‘Latin America’s increasing geopolitical influence and economic growth open up political and economic opportunities for the Netherlands and other EU member states. The EU and Latin America share common values such as fundamental freedoms, democracy and the rule of law, and should therefore work together to promote human rights worldwide. We should also work together on international peace and security.’ Foreign minister Frans Timmermans delivered this message on arriving in Santiago de Chile to attend the EU-LAC Summit on sustainable development. This two-day conference brings together heads of state and government from all EU, Latin American and Caribbean countries.
Following the Brazilian nightclub fire, Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs Frans Timmermans has offered Brazil’s foreign minister Antonio Patriota and the victims’ loved ones his deepest condolences. The ministers spoke in the margins of the EU-Latin America summit in Chile.
Minister of Foreign Affairs Frans Timmermans today spoke with Surinamese foreign minister Winston Lackin. The meeting at the EU-Latin America summit in Santiago de Chile was the first ministerial contact between the Netherlands and Suriname since 2010.
Minister of Foreign Affairs Frans Timmermans today had a first meeting with his Cuban counterpart, Bruno Rodriguez Parrilla. The two ministers agreed to open a dialogue about relations between the Netherlands and Cuba. ‘Cuba is undergoing reforms and the relationship between Cuba and the EU is changing,’ Mr Timmermans said. ‘That is significant not only for the Netherlands but also for the Caribbean countries in the Kingdom.’
Minister of Finance Jeroen Dijsselbloem, 46, has been appointed president of the Eurogroup, the informal administrative body of the states of the Eurozone. ‘It’s a great honour for me to be given this job, particularly in these difficult economic times for the eurozone.’