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Bulgaria abroad

Bulgaria, Romania lambast Dutch anti-immigration website

Author: The Sofia Echo staff Date: Fri, Feb 10 2012 3098 Views
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The foreign ministries of Bulgaria and Romania have criticised the website created by Dutch far-right Freedom Party (PVV), which calls on visitors to lodge complaints against immigrants from Central and Eastern Europe.

The introduction on the website, which the party called the "Central and Eastern European hotline", says: "Are they causing you problems? Or did you lose your job to a Pole, Bulgarian, Romanian or other Central of East European? We would love to hear from you."

Bulgarian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Vessela Tcherneva said: "The Bulgarian Foreign Ministry finds it unacceptable that a founding member state of the EU, such as the Netherlands, should tolerate incitement to hatred, discrimination and xenophobia, which runs counter to the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union."

Romania's foreign ministry said that it had instructed its embassy in the Netherlands to convey its "strong objection concerning the launch of the website, which discriminates workers from Central and Eastern Europe, including Romanians." According to reports in Romanian-language media, the ministry said that it hoped that Dutch authorities would take appropriate action against the clearly discriminatory website that breaches European law.

Earlier, the Polish embasy in The Hague lodged a formal complaint against the website. "Such a hotline will foster a wrong image [of Polish people in The Netherlands]. Those who do not have problems with their Polish neighbours will not go to the website," embassy spokesperson Janusz Wolosz was quoted as saying by website euobserver.com.

According to Radio Netherlands Worldwide, which quoted a report in Dutch newspaper de Volksrant, PVV's website had received about 14 000 complaints in two days. The response to the hotline is indicative of people’s need to air their grievances, the report quoted PVV MP Ino van den Besselaar as saying.

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