Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte apologized on Monday Holland’ “Slavery in the past”, which he said still had “negative effects”.
Rutte’s comments were part of the Dutch government’s wider acknowledgment of the country’s colonial past, and an official response to a report titled “Chains of the Past” by the Slavery History Dialogue group, published in July 2021.
“For centuries under the authority of the Dutch state, human dignity has been violated in the most brutal way possible,” Rutte said during a speech at the National Archives in The Hague.
“Successive Dutch governments after 1863 failed to adequately recognize and recognize that our past of slavery continued to have negative effects and still does. I offer apologies from the Dutch government,” said the Dutch Prime Minister.
Rutte also spoke briefly in English on Monday, saying, “Today, I apologize.”
“For centuries, the Dutch state and its representatives have facilitated, stimulated, maintained, and profited from slavery. For centuries, in the name of the Dutch state, human beings have been reduced to commodities, exploited, and mistreated.”
He said that slavery should be condemned as a “crime against humanity”.
Rutte acknowledged that he had witnessed a personal “change of thinking” and said he was wrong when he thought Holland’s role in slavery was “a thing of the past”.
“It is true that no one alive now is personally responsible for slavery. But it is also true that the Dutch state, in all its manifestations throughout history, bears responsibility for the terrible sufferings to which slaves and their descendants are subjected.”
In early 2020, it was released Dutch government He returned a stolen ceremonial crown to the Ethiopian government.
Country benefited a lot from the slave trade in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries; One of the roles of the Dutch West India Company was to transport slaves from Africa to the Americas. The Dutch did not ban slavery in their lands until 1863, even though it was illegal in the Netherlands.
It is estimated that Dutch traders shipped more than half a million enslaved Africans to the Americas, Reuters reports. Many went to Brazil and the Caribbean, the agency wrote, while a large number of Asians were enslaved in the Dutch East Indies, which is modern-day Indonesia.
Reuters added that Dutch children had learned little about the role the Netherlands played in the slave trade.
Conversations about the country’s stance on race have long surrounded one of the holiday traditions. personality “Black Pete” He usually sees a white person wearing an all-black face, an afro wig, red lipstick and earrings, and is often part of the St. Nicholas celebrations in Holland in December.
rota in 2020 He said the country had gone through his views on Blackbeat “major changes” — but he wouldn’t go so far as to ban it.