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'No future for Dutch Orthodox Jews’

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Prominent VVD politician Frits Bolkestein believes there is no future for 'active' Jews in the Netherlands. The conservative politician made his remarks in an interview with freesheet De Pers.

In the interview, Mr Bolkestein says that when he talks about active Jews he means those who are recognisable as such, for instance Orthodox Jews. The former EU Commissioner says there is no future for this group in the Netherlands because of "the anti-Semitism among Dutchmen of Moroccan descent, whose numbers keep growing''.

He feels that this group of Jews should encourage their children to emigrate to either the United States or Israel, because he has little confidence in the effectiveness of the government's proposals for fighting anti-Semitism.

Earlier, Mr Bolkestein made similar statements in Het Verval (The Decline) by Manfred Gerstenberg, a recently published book about Jews in the Netherlands. Frits Bolkestein was political leader of the current coalition party VVD between 1990 en 1998. He later served as European Commissioner from 1999 until 2004.

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This article is part of the RNW archive. RNW is the former Radio Netherlands Worldwide or Wereldomroep, which was founded as the Dutch international public broadcaster in 1947. In 2011 Dutch government’s decided to cut funding and shift RNW in 2013 from the ministry of Education, Culture and Science to the ministry of Foreign Affairs. More information about RNW’s current activities can be found at http://www.rnw.org/about-rnw