An emergency asylum seekers shelter recently established at Gelderse Harskamp army camp in Ede has announced that it will close tomorrow due to fears that a planned demonstration by two extreme Dutch groups may lead to violence.
The right-wing extremist Dutch People’s Union (NVU) and Anti Fascist Aktie (AFA) announced two Saturday demonstrations in the shelter’s area. The NVU’s demonstration will be carried under the slogan “Happiness seekers not welcome” according to an NRC report.
The Central Agency for the Reception of Asylum Seekers (COA) fears for the safety of residents and employees. As a result, the decision was made to keep the location’s gates closed. This will temporarily prevent access to and from the shelter.
The fear is very real at the shelter, with a COA spokesperson telling the NRC that “the safety of residents and staff cannot be guaranteed.”
This planned demonstration is being considered by COA and the police with a previous violent episode in mind. In the same area back in August, tensions escalated, fireworks were set off, car tires were burned, and the police were forced to use dogs to disperse the crowd.
The NVU and the AFA received permits from the municipality approving the two demonstrations at separate locations over concerns that participants from the two opposing groups will clash with each other.
A further fear is that residents and staff of the centre may get caught up in the violence. “The ideology of the two groups is so different that we cannot rule out the possibility that a dangerous situation could arise for the people who want to leave the camp on Saturday,” a letter from the COA to residents and staff said in preparation of tomorrow’s crowds.
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Feature Image: Joeppoulssen/Depositphotos
Please edit your information. The AFA organised a counter demonstration against the NVU’s “Happiness seekers not welcome” demonstration. The way you present the info makes it seem like the Anti Fascist Aktie has united with the NVU to demonstrate which is not true at all.
Hi Wil 🙋♀️ Thank you for reaching out! We’ve updated the article to make the information about the demonstrations clearer.