- Category: News
- Created on Monday, 30 April 2012 17:12
- Written by Amsterdam Herald
Christian Democrat MP Henk Jan Ormel told radio station BNR that cabinet members should stay away from the tournament until an independent inspection of Ukrainian prisons had been carried out.
The Netherlands are due to kick off the first Ukrainian fixture of the summer tournament when they play Denmark on June 9 in Kharkov. The tournament is being co-hosted by Ukraine and Poland.
There is concern in particular about the treatment of former president Yulia Tymoshenko, who was jailed last year for abuse of office and is being detained in Kharkov.
Last week she went on hunger strike after claiming she had been beaten by prison guards.
Europe’s justice commissioner Viviane Reding has turned down an invitation to attend the game in protest at the country’s worsening human rights record.
In the latest unrest, four bombs went off in the city of Dnepropetrovsk on Friday leaving 30 people wounded, 22 of whom had to go to hospital.
President Viktor Yanukovych said the bombing was a terrorist act and local authorities have offered a €200,000 reward for information that leads police to the culprits.
Five European heads of state have already announced they will not be attending the summit of Central and Eastern European leaders in Yalta on May 11 and 12.
However, relations between the Dutch government and eastern European nations have been at a sensitive point since Freedom Party (PVV) leader Geert Wilders launched his ‘shop-a-migrant’ website.
The site asked Dutch citizens to report people from eastern European countries who caused disruption in their neighbourhoods or ‘stole’ their jobs.
It was condemned by leading diplomats, including the Polish ambassador to the Netherlands, as well as the European Parliament in Strasbourg.