A RALLY AGAINST INHUMANE CONDITIONS IS STARTED BY AN INFANT DEATH IN A NETHERLANDS REFUGEE CAMP

Activists claim that while the Dutch government has quickly absorbed 74,000 migrants from Ukraine, it is making hundreds more from African and Middle Eastern countries sleep outside without access to bathrooms or showers. After a newborn passed away at the nation's main refugee intake center in Ter Apel, hundreds of demonstrators demonstrated in Amsterdam on Friday, August 26 to denounce the nation's "inhumane" treatment of asylum seekers. Hundreds of people demonstrated in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, on Friday, August 26, to denounce the nation's "inhumane" treatment of asylum seekers while chanting "refugees are welcome here." MSF, which normally operates in foreign crisis zones, declared it will provide medical care at the camp as the situation at Ter Apel deteriorated, marking the relief organization's first deployment within the Netherlands. Two days after a newborn passed away in the country's main refugee reception center in the tiny, outlying town of Ter Apel, the Red Cross and Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) announced they will give assistance to the roughly 2000 refugees stranded there. Sam, a Jordanian-Palestinian asylum seeker who declined to offer his last name to preserve his identity, told The Real News at the event that "they don't have a place to shower, access to bathrooms, or medical treatment." He claimed that the circumstances in Ter Apel over the preceding two weeks were worse than those he encountered when traveling across Europe to reach the Netherlands. "It is awful. People are famished and lack sufficient clothing, he claimed. The bulk of those seeking asylum in the Netherlands were from the Middle East and Africa, and as demonstrations grew, the Dutch government declared it would place them in temporary shelters. However, proponents of immigrant rights were unsatisfied and pointed out that Ukrainian refugees were treated much better. A member of the feminist WONDA Collective named Martina Heijjd claimed, "After the situation in Ukraine, the government and municipalities were providing money or housing, free travel." "That's what we want to see for these refugees as well," Although David, who opted not to reveal his last name, is originally from Nigeria, he abandoned his home in Ukraine earlier this year. "What citizenship do you possess is the first question you are asked? Therefore, it makes no difference if I just got through hell and survived a bombing. That's going to remain the question forever," he remarked. "You receive special treatment if you were born in Ukraine." The Netherlands has already resettled at least 74,000 Ukrainians who were driven from their homes by Russia's invasion earlier in the year; a third of those Ukrainian refugees had found employment by July. In contrast, hundreds of asylum seekers have been forced to live outdoors or in overcrowded temporary shelters. This is racist. Heijjd questioned, "What else need I say about it? "The treatment of the two groups has been quite clearly different." The Ter Apel site continues to experience overcrowding and severe shortages of food, medicine, and shelter despite repeated warnings about the conditions there. 700 people are therefore forced to live and sleep outdoors despite temperatures reaching 90 degrees throughout the week. Some claim that this is a deliberate failure and that the ongoing refugee crisis was intended to discourage migration from the Global South because the country's institutional capacity to accommodate more refugees was reduced at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and authorities have failed to restore it in response to growing demand. "That's the impression they aim to convey... It would be preferable for you not to come over here because you would receive really poor treatment if you did. That is our government's stance. A MEMBER OF THE LEFTIST GROENLINKS PARTY, IMAN ABRONTAN Iman Abrontan, a member of the left-leaning GroenLinks party, said: "It's very evident that our government wants to give the people that want to come here the idea that it's also very horrible in the Netherlands, [that] it's the same as if you [were] to stay in Syria." "That's the impression they aim to convey... It would be preferable for you not to come over here because you would receive really poor treatment if you did. Our government has a policy like that, he remarked. When word spread that a three-month-old had died at the camp because officials had neglected to give basic humanitarian supplies, many guests said they felt driven to join the demonstration. At the event, Vicker Annellies Jans said, "[The news] made me so enraged. She remarked, "It's such a pity that... in a country like [the Netherlands] we treat people like way when we are supposed to be so tolerant. Narayan, a different protest participant who declined to give her last name, echoed that sentiment. She remarked, "I'm here today because I'm sorry that Doctors without Borders... thought it necessary to volunteer in the camp in a country like Holland. MSF, which normally operates in foreign crisis zones, declared it will provide medical care at the camp as the situation at Ter Apel deteriorated, marking the relief organization's first deployment within the Netherlands. There needs to be a structural fix, like setting up several compassionate receiving areas. The Dutch government has been urged to take action on this for years. DOCTORS WITHOUT BORDERS/MEDECINS SANS FRONTIRES IN THE NETHERLANDS DIRECTOR JUDITH SARGENTINI The director of MSF in the Netherlands, Judith Sargentini, stated in a statement, "We cannot stand by and do nothing with an increasingly terrible and unacceptable situation on our doorstep." The Dutch government and local governments must act quickly to raise living standards and assume responsibility for the medical care of those who are most in need. Sargentini urged swift action to resolve the problem, echoing the demands of many rally attendees. "There must be a structural answer, such as the development of more — and more compassionate — receiving areas. The Dutch government has been urged to take action on this for years. The day before the protest, 500 far-right demonstrators gathered in Ter Apel in retaliation for a growing far-right campaign against asylum seekers. Sam heard these protesters calling the locals obscenities and ordering them to "go back to your country" as he saw it. The Nigerian refugee from Ukraine named David has also been advised to "go back" to his nation. Why the fuck would [people like me] come to Ukraine, he questioned, "if [we] had a country to go to in the first place?" Officials were urged by counter-demonstrators to disregard the anti-immigrant demonstrations and treat asylum seekers "humanely." According to Jans, "Our administration is currently kind of right-wing, and they don't see them as humans; rather, they see them as people who are invading our nation." "But they are people, and people deserve love, shelter, and our open arms."

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