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(NRC) Emergency order Eritrean meeting Veldhoven unjustified

Posted by: Semere Asmelash

Date: Thursday, 14 June 2018

Emergency order Eritrean meeting Veldhoven unjustified

According to an administrative judge, the mayor of Veldhoven was not allowed to ban an Eritrean meeting last year in his city.

The police intervened last year in a demonstration of dozens of Eritreans and sympathizers in Veldhoven. Mayor Jack Mikkers of the municipality banned the meeting at the time, which would take place in conference center Koningshof.Photo Rob Engelaar / ANP 

The mayor of Veldhoven was not allowed to ban the Eritrean meeting that would take place in his city last year. The administrative judge in Den Bosch ruled that Thursday after the organizers of the conference went to court to claim compensation.

Because of the ruling they can now proceed further. The meeting was to take place last year from 14 to 16 April and was organized by the Dutch Eritrean Platform, the youth section of the only permitted political party in Eritrea. As a result of disturbances, former mayor Jack Mikkers, now mayor of Den Bosch, forbade the event before it even started.

Opponents of the controversial Eritrean regime protested one day before the conference against the arrival of a government representative of the African country. There were disturbances. The police arrested about 120 people.

Serious disorder

The Bossche judge gives the burgomaster on Thursday that there was "serious disorder" during the riots around the meeting. But, says the administrative judge, this does not mean that the mayor was allowed to issue an emergency order. He completely relied on the advice of the police without formulating his own judgment on whether there were other options except to completely cover the event.

The judge:

"For example, the mayor did not ask how many police officers were available and whether these numbers could be delivered."

Noodbevel Eritrese bijeenkomst Veldhoven onterecht

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