Blok: Venezuelan refugee problem is indeed Kingdom affair
WILLEMSTAD - The Dutch government is not always clear about the jurisdiction principle and its responsibilities with regard to the islands in the Kingdom. When is something an internal affair and when is it not?
When the elections on Curacao threatened to be postponed early last year, the Netherlands took hard action. But when the Venezuelan refugee problem arose, Undersecretary Raymond Knops of Kingdom Relations and Minister Ank Bijleveld of Defense were quick to declare that this is an internal affair.
Minister of Foreign Affairs Stef Blok says that on October 10, 2010 it became clear what the authorities are. The Lower House and the Senate of the Dutch Parliament have also recently asked questions about the Venezuelan refugee problem.
Blok stressed that the Venezuelan issue is foreign affairs which means that it is a kingdom responsibility. When it is about admission and expulsion, then it’s an internal affair. But even in this content, the government of the Netherland has offered technical support to both Curaçao and Aruba.