It is a political problem that the central government should not pass to the security areas. As head of a security area, I do not want to pressure other municipalities. This puts relationships on edge, while we always work very well together. “The central government should make its own agreements with the municipalities,” says Amsterdam Mayor Vimke Halsema.
“We forgot to learn the lessons of 2015. We could have seen that coming seven years ago,” says Wouter Kolf van Dordrecht, referring to the recent refugee crisis. “At that time, many municipalities established support for centers for asylum seekers, but then they did not come.” Nor does he want to force his colleagues, such as the Security Council. “I don’t feel fully empowered to represent all the municipalities.”
Already before the meeting, President Hubert Prouls announced that “a great appeal to the municipalities” was being made again. “Although this is not our job,” said the mayor of Nijmegen. Together with the government and the union of Dutch municipalities, the Security Council is trying to pull the “cart” out of the sand, he says.
If necessary, “unwilling assemblies” should be forced to accept people. It is now a real crisis. Then you have to be able to intervene with unconventional means.” Other officials believe that the municipalities must work in unison. “Forcing each other is the last thing we must do,” said Mayor Jan Hamming of Zanstad.
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