Solar storm heads Earth's way after double sun blasts

Solar storm heads Earth's way after double sun blasts
The Aurora Australis is observed from the International Space Station during a geomagnetic storm on May 29, 2010 (AFP Photo)

Northern lights over Terschelling, Friesland..

Northern lights over Terschelling, Friesland..
(Terschelling, Friesland, Netherlands - 27-28 February, 2014)

Northern lights delight Dutch in surprise showing in north and east.

Northern lights delight Dutch in surprise showing in north and east.
Still from timelapse film by Schylgefilm (Terschelling, Friesland, Netherlands - 17 Mar 2015)


Amsterdam, The Netherlands
"A Summary" – Apr 2, 2011 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Religion, Shift of Human Consciousness, 2012, Intelligent/Benevolent Design, EU, South America, 5 Currencies, Water Cycle (Heat up, Mini Ice Ace, Oceans, Fish, Earthquakes ..), Middle East, Internet, Israel, Dictators, Palestine, US, Japan (Quake/Tsunami Disasters , People, Society ...), Nuclear Power Revealed, Hydro Power, Geothermal Power, Moon, Financial Institutes (Recession, Realign integrity values ..) , China, North Korea, Global Unity,..... etc.) -

“ … Here is another one. A change in what Human nature will allow for government. "Careful, Kryon, don't talk about politics. You'll get in trouble." I won't get in trouble. I'm going to tell you to watch for leadership that cares about you. "You mean politics is going to change?" It already has. It's beginning. Watch for it. You're going to see a total phase-out of old energy dictatorships eventually. The potential is that you're going to see that before 2013.

They're going to fall over, you know, because the energy of the population will not sustain an old energy leader ..."
"Update on Current Events" – Jul 23, 2011 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) - (Subjects: The Humanization of God, Gaia, Shift of Human Consciousness, 2012, Benevolent Design, Financial Institutes (Recession, System to Change ...), Water Cycle (Heat up, Mini Ice Ace, Oceans, Fish, Earthquakes ..), Nuclear Power Revealed, Geothermal Power, Hydro Power, Drinking Water from Seawater, No need for Oil as Much, Middle East in Peace, Persia/Iran Uprising, Muhammad, Israel, DNA, Two Dictators to fall soon, Africa, China, (Old) Souls, Species to go, Whales to Humans, Global Unity,..... etc.)
(Subjects: Who/What is Kryon ?, Egypt Uprising, Iran/Persia Uprising, Peace in Middle East without Israel actively involved, Muhammad, "Conceptual" Youth Revolution, "Conceptual" Managed Business, Internet, Social Media, News Media, Google, Bankers, Global Unity,..... etc.)





"The Recalibration of Awareness – Apr 20/21, 2012 (Kryon channeled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Old Energy, Recalibration Lectures, God / Creator, Religions/Spiritual systems (Catholic Church, Priests/Nun’s, Worship, John Paul Pope, Women in the Church otherwise church will go, Current Pope won’t do it), Middle East, Jews, Governments will change (Internet, Media, Democracies, Dictators, North Korea, Nations voted at once), Integrity (Businesses, Tobacco Companies, Bankers/ Financial Institutes, Pharmaceutical company to collapse), Illuminati (Started in Greece, with Shipping, Financial markets, Stock markets, Pharmaceutical money (fund to build Africa, to develop)), Shift of Human Consciousness, (Old) Souls, Women, Masters to/already come back, Global Unity.... etc.) - (Text version)

… The Shift in Human Nature

You're starting to see integrity change. Awareness recalibrates integrity, and the Human Being who would sit there and take advantage of another Human Being in an old energy would never do it in a new energy. The reason? It will become intuitive, so this is a shift in Human Nature as well, for in the past you have assumed that people take advantage of people first and integrity comes later. That's just ordinary Human nature.

In the past, Human nature expressed within governments worked like this: If you were stronger than the other one, you simply conquered them. If you were strong, it was an invitation to conquer. If you were weak, it was an invitation to be conquered. No one even thought about it. It was the way of things. The bigger you could have your armies, the better they would do when you sent them out to conquer. That's not how you think today. Did you notice?

Any country that thinks this way today will not survive, for humanity has discovered that the world goes far better by putting things together instead of tearing them apart. The new energy puts the weak and strong together in ways that make sense and that have integrity. Take a look at what happened to some of the businesses in this great land (USA). Up to 30 years ago, when you started realizing some of them didn't have integrity, you eliminated them. What happened to the tobacco companies when you realized they were knowingly addicting your children? Today, they still sell their products to less-aware countries, but that will also change.

What did you do a few years ago when you realized that your bankers were actually selling you homes that they knew you couldn't pay for later? They were walking away, smiling greedily, not thinking about the heartbreak that was to follow when a life's dream would be lost. Dear American, you are in a recession. However, this is like when you prune a tree and cut back the branches. When the tree grows back, you've got control and the branches will grow bigger and stronger than they were before, without the greed factor. Then, if you don't like the way it grows back, you'll prune it again! I tell you this because awareness is now in control of big money. It's right before your eyes, what you're doing. But fear often rules. …

Koningsdag 2016

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Monday, February 19, 2018

Drug companies are blackmailing us with expensive drugs: healthcare chief

DutchNews, February 19, 2018


The Dutch healthcare institute Zorginstituut Nederland says insurers should stop paying for expensive drugs if pharmaceutical companies continue to refuse to say how they arrive at the price, the Financieele Dagblad said on Monday. 

The institute, which assesses the efficacy of new drugs and advises the government on whether they should be included in the basic healthcare policy, says the drugs companies are effectively blackmailing officials by refusing to be transparent about their prices. 

In particular, the ZN is angry about the drug Spinraza, which costs €250,000 per patient per year. It has recommended that the drug, used to treat spinal muscular atrophy, should not be covered by insurance unless the manufacturers chop 85% from the price. 

ZN chairman Arnold Moerkamp told the FD he thinks officials should seriously consider not funding drugs, despite the impact on patients. 

‘We are not only here for the patients who will use the new medicine but the 17 million people who have to pay the bill,’ he said. ‘If you decide to pay for one medicine, you won’t be able to pay for another’s treatment. You can only spend your budget once.’ 

Pharmaceutical companies say that the high development costs are the reason why new drugs can be so expensive.

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"... Is He Alone? How About You?

What kind of addiction does the old energy have for you? Are you continuing to do things that you think are absolutely correct, working with perceptions that have been given to you in an old energy that you are still wallowing in? Of course, reading this you will say, "Not me." Remember the Korean leader. He still thinks he is right and never saw it. How invested in struggle are you? I have some news. You can't do it for long. First, you lose friends. You can't claim to be one thing and be another anymore.

So let's start extending this teaching. If the darkness is so attractive, is it affecting anything else? The answer? It is absolutely affecting everything else. There's an entire industry we have told you about that will eventually fail because it has been developed in an older energy, worked in an older energy, and has no integrity. The industry is Big Pharma. We've told you that its fall is imminent and the attributes will come from the ones within it, who will expose it. When this actually happens is up to you, since this is free choice of the developing consciousness of your country. However, let's look for a moment, not at the event, but what it may then lead to.

Big Pharma is invested in an old idea that designer chemistry is the answer to healing. This idea has been prevalent for decades and many feel that it is the highest technology available. However, instead, and in the light, there starts to appear another idea entirely: The Human body has an unrealized awareness and it is actually the master healer! The Human body is designed to self-correct. So, therefore, don't put foreign chemistry into it, but instead find out how to give it elegant, specific instruction sets to heal itself. Make them high-technology instruction sets to inform it to heal itself!

This is homeopathy expanded, you might say. There are processes coming that understand that this Human body of yours is so much better than any chemist has ever realized, and the new energy is starting to expose this fact. The answer to healing is not chemistry. The answer to health and healing is by addressing the "smart part" of the Human body, giving it instructions to utilize former unknown systems that are ready to create spontaneous remission and beyond.

Remember my channelling given on the "youthing template" or the fact that you all have dormant "genesis cells" within your body (cells that have the full body blueprint and a source for very young stem cells)? These both were expositions of systems that are smart and ready to create new cells and healing in ways that will seem miraculous! But they need to be "instructed". 

Funding Will Trail for Awhile

How much money do you think is invested in the old ways? Right now, there is an industry of investment that is going to fail. So, do you think all this money will then be invested into the new methods? The answer is NO, not right away. Just like the North Korean leader's blindness, the old ways are just too addicting. "Keep it the same," they will yell. "The fall is temporary," they will say. "It always worked before, and it always will." Many investors will lose fortunes. The dysfunction is already being seen clearly. When you turn on your media at night, much of what you hear in the commercial breaks is how the chemistry didn't work! Now you get a chance to join others and sue the pharma companies for bad chemistry! You think something is beginning to break? It is. You see, they are already wallowing in something that's going to make them fail. They are advertising how broken the very system is. Both big pharma and their investors don't see the light coming yet, even though it is becoming dysfunctional before their eyes.  ..."



“…I'm in Canada and I know it, but I will tell those listening and reading in the American audience the following: Get ready! Because there are some institutions that are yet to fall, ones that don't have integrity and that could never be helped with a bail out. Again, we tell you the biggest one is big pharma, and we told you that before. It's inevitable. If not now, then in a decade. It's inevitable and they will fight to stay alive and they will not be crossing the bridge. For on the other side of the bridge is a new way, not just for medicine but for care. Paradigms that have not yet been thought of, which don't represent any system that currently exists, will be created and developed by young minds who have concepts that the seniors don't know about. Things that don't have integrity today will fall over tomorrow. Just get ready. It's all part of what's on the other side of the bridge. And the old energy won't like it, and they will object. …”

Friday, February 16, 2018

Esmee Visser is surprise winner of 5,000 metres gold medal

DutchNews, February 16, 2018

Gold medalist Esmee Visser celebrates on the podium. Photo: AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda 

Esmee Visser, skating in her first Olympics at the age of 21, beat one of the greats of women’s distance speed skating on Friday, clinching the 5,000 metres gold medal in a time of 6.50.23 

‘It is really fantastic, I don’t know what to say,’ Visser said after her surprise victory. 

The Czech Republic’s Martina Sábliková, who took the title in 2010 and 2014, won silver and Natalia Voronina of Russia the bronze. 

Visser, who covered the distance 12 seconds slower at the Dutch championships in October, is not backed by a commercial team and has spent her time preparing for the games with junior skaters in Groningen, broadcaster NOS said. 

Visser is only the second Dutch woman to win Olympic gold at the distance.  The first was Yvonne van Gennip at the Calgary Olympics 30 years ago. 

The Netherlands has now won gold in six of the seven speed skating events so far.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Former Dutch Prime Minister Rudd Lubbers dies

Deutsche Welle, 14 February 2018

Ruud Lubbers, the Netherlands' longest serving prime minister, has died aged 78. Lubbers also headed the UN refugee agency on a symbolic $1 salary, and, in 1991, hosted the EU's formative Maastricht summit.

Former Dutch prime minister Ruud Lubbers in B/W (picture alliance/ANP/V. Kuypers)

Lubbers, a conservative who argued for "more markets, less government" and a closer European Union, passed away on Wednesday in his home city of Rotterdam, the Dutch government announced. No cause of death was given.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said the Netherlands had "lost a statesman with huge stature" and went on to praise Lubbers for his commitment to Europe and as a "world citizen" who was "intelligent and wise."

"He knew how to find a solution to every problem," Rutte added.

Lubbers, a Christian Democrat from a Rotterdam engineering and machinery family, who studied economics and then headed an employers' federation, formed his first government in 1982 with the liberal VVD party, on a pledge to cut back the Dutch welfare state.

His slogan "more markets, less government" prompted conflict with trade unions but earned him a reputation for the "Dutch model" of spurring the economy to create more jobs.

Key role at Maastricht

In his third consecutive term, he formed a grand coalition with center-left Social Democrats in 1989, and played a key role in late 1991 when the Netherlands hosted an EU summit that formulated the bloc's Maastricht Treaty focused on political integration.

The accord, signed in early 1992, also laid the groundwork for the shared euro currency.

When he stepped down in the Dutch election year 1994, he had become the Netherland's longest-serving prime minister.

His 12 years in office had included his persuading parliament to accept the deployment of NATO European missiles in the Netherlands and ambitious conservation projects across the densely populated low-lying nation.

WWF and then UNHCR

After stints in academia, bids for top jobs at the European Commission and NATO, and criticism of Germany's then-chancellor, Helmut Kohl, Lubbers went on to serve as president of the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) in 2000, before becoming the head of the UNHCR refugee agency in 2001.

Bombing of Afghanistan wrong

A month after the 9/11 airline hijacker attacks on New York and Washington, Ludders rejected US bombardment of largely Taliban-controlled Afghanistan.

He told Germany's Die Zeit newspaper in October 2001 that less US military action, not more, combined with aid agency assistance, would minimize the "danger of a conflagration."

As UNHCR commissioner he had urged the United States: "no revenge, no disproportionate reprisal attacks that will inevitably cause larger refugee flows and human suffering."

Resignation

His UNHCR post was extended in 2003 but in 2005 he was forced to step down over sexual harassment allegations, which he rejected as defamatory.

In latter years, when the Netherlands had difficulties forming coalition governments, Queen Beatrix reportedly called in Lubbers as adviser and intermediary.

Dutch broadcaster NOS said Lubbers had long suffered from an unspecified illness.

ipj/kms (AFP, AP, Reuters, Munzinger-Archive)

Golden girl Jorien ter Mors adds to Dutch Olympic medal tally

DutchNews, February 14, 2018

Jorien ter Mors on the winner’s podium. Photo Soenar Chamid /HH

Jorien ter Mors won the fifth Dutch gold medal of the winter Olympics so far on Wednesday, setting a new Olympic record in the 1,000 metres speed skating event. 

Ter Mors, who won gold in the 1,500 metres in Sochi, completed the distance in 1.13.56. Silver and bronze went to Japan’s Nao Kodaira and Miho Takagi. 

‘I don’t know what else I could have done. I think it was the perfect race,’ Ter Mors told broadcaster NOS. ‘I felt great, I did all I could, then it was just a question of waiting. I’m super happy.’ 

Dutch media described the win as a triumph for Ter Mors, who started the season with a knee injury and had to pull out of the World Cup with back trouble. 

Ireen Wüst, who took gold in the 1,500 metres earlier in the competition, was ninth and Marrit Leenstra finished in sixth place. 

The Netherlands is currently second in the medal table, behind Germany, with five gold, four silver and two bronze medals. 

Tomorrow is the men’s 10,000 metres speed skating event with Sven Kramer and Jorrit Bergsma.

Gold and silver for the Dutch men, and a silver on the short track

DutchNews, February 13, 2018

Gold medalist Kjeld Nuis blows a kiss to the crowd. Photo: AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda

Kjeld Nuis took the gold medal in the men’s 1,500 metres at the winter Olympics in Pyeongchang in style on Tuesday, with a new track record time of 1.44.01. 

His team mate Patrick Roest took silver but Koen Verweij, silver medal winner over the distance in Sochi, could manage no more than a disappointing 11th place. 

Nuis and Verweij were favourites for the event after Russia’s Denis Yuskov was banned from taking part.

‘It was a tough race,’ Nuis, who began the season badly due to illness, told NOS. ‘But I thought, just keep going. The last bend was really tough but then it did not matter any more.’ 

There was also Dutch delight in the short track events when Yara van Kerkhof took the bronze medal in the women’s 500 metres, later promoted to silver after Korea’s Choi Min-jeong was disqualified. 

But there was disappointment for the Netherlands when the men’s relay short track team – seen as favourites for the title – were disqualified in the semi-finals.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Dutch foreign minister resigns after lying about Putin meeting

DutchNews, February 13, 2018

Halbe Zijlstra leaves parliament after announcing his resignation. Photo: Phil Nijhuis/HH

Dutch foreign minister Halbe Zijlstra has resigned after admitting he lied about being in Russian president Vladimir’s dacha in 2006 and hearing Putin talk about his plans for a greater Russia. 

Zijlstra had been under fire since admitting on Monday that he lied about overhearing Putin define ‘Greater Russia’ as ‘Russia, Belarus, Ukraine and the Baltic states,’ then adding that ‘Kazakhstan was nice to have’. 

He had been due to debate the incident with MPs on Tuesday afternoon but resigned ahead of the scheduled debate. 

In a short statement, Zijlstra said the lie was ‘by far the biggest mistake I have made in my political career’. ‘The Netherlands,’ he said, ‘deserves a foreign affairs minister who is above all reproach.’ 


Doubts about the veracity of the foreign minister’s claims came to light when former senior Shell executive Jeroen van der Veer told the Volkskrant that Zijlstra had not been at the meeting in 2006. Zijlstra then admitted he was not present but insisted that the substance of the story was true. 

Van der Veer  later emailed the Volkskrant to say he had spoken to Zijlstra about Putin in a more wide-ranging conversation but that Putin’s remark about Greater Russia was ‘historically intended’. 

Zijlstra’s interpretation of the comments ‘did not come from me or from the words I used’, he said. Nor does Van der Veer recognise the quote about Kazakhstan. ‘I don’t recall how I mentioned the specific countries to Zijlstra at the time, but “nice to have” is not a term I would use,’ he told the paper. 

Klaas Dijkstra, who leads the VVD in the lower house of parliament, said in a statement he ‘understood and respected’ Zijlstra’s decision. 

‘What he did was stupid and unrepresentative of his contribution to our country,’ he said. ‘He has been of immeasurable value to the VVD, is one of the supporters of the policy which helped us out of the crisis and one of the architects of the cabinet he is now leaving.’ 

The Russian embassy in The Hague on Tuesday issued a statement describing Zijlstra’s action as a domestic matter but accusing the Netherlands of spreading anti-Russian sentiment. 

‘We cannot ignore how perceptions of Russia’s aggressive intentions are being persistently propagated in Dutch public opinion,’ the statement said.


Van der Steur and prime minister Mark Rutte embrace after his
resignation. Photo: Peter Hilz/ HH

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Opstelten and Teeven during their press conferences. Photos: Nos

Dutch justice minister, deputy resign over drugs dealer cash deal


"The Great Escape" - Mar 11, 2017 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Carroll)  (Text version "The Great Escape")

“… The Fall of Many - Seen It Yet?

You are going to see more and more personal secrets being revealed about persons in high places of popularity or government. It will seem like an epidemic of non-integrity! But what is happening is exactly what we have been teaching. The new energy has light that will expose the darkness of things that are not commensurate with integrity. They have always been there, and they were kept from being seen by many who keep secrets in the dark. Seen the change yet?

In order to get to a more stable future, you will have to go through gyrations of dark and light. What this means is that the dark is going to be revealed and push back at you. It will eventually lose. We told you this. That's what you're here for is to help those around you who don't see an escape from the past. They didn't get their nuclear war, but everything else is going into the dumper anyway. … 


"Recalibration of Free Choice"–  Mar 3, 2012 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Carroll) - (Subjects: (Old) SoulsMidpoint on 21-12-2012, Shift of Human Consciousness, Black & White vs. Color, 1 - Spirituality (Religions) shifting, Loose a Pope “soon”, 2 - Humans will change react to drama, 3 - Civilizations/Population on Earth,  4 - Alternate energy sources (Geothermal, Tidal (Paddle wheels), Wind), 5 – Financials Institutes/concepts will change (Integrity – Ethical) , 6 - News/Media/TV to change, 7 – Big Pharmaceutical company will collapse “soon”, (Keep people sick), (Integrity – Ethical)  8 – Wars will be over on Earth, Global Unity, … etc.) (Text version)

“…5 - Integrity That May Surprise…

The Unthinkable… Politics, A Review

Humans will begin to search for integrity and fairness and it's going to happen in the places you never expect. I said this last week, so this is a review. There'll come a time when you will demand this of your politics - fairness and integrity. So when the candidates start calling each other names, you will turn your back on them and they won't get any votes. They're going to get the point real fast, don't you think? How about that?

Let me give you another potential. This country that I sit in right now [USA] will set the mold for that particular attribute. I have no clock. Watch for the youngsters to set this in motion, and they will, for they are the voters of tomorrow and they do not want the energy of today. To some of them, it's so abominable they won't even register to vote in this energy. You're going to see this soon. That was number five.. ..."



“…  Last week, I gave you a message about the potentials of 2011. And there were those in this room who attended. I'm going to repeat something I said there, for you need to hear it and it has to do with politics. It would seem intuitive to every single Human Being in the room that in order to accomplish what you do as Americans in Congress, you must have at least two parties. For that is the way it has always been - the red and the blue.

What if I told you that there will come a time when there will be no parties? You might then say, "Well, that's impossible, Kryon, because you're not Human and you don't know how funding works." You might say, "It has to be a party that creates the power to raise money for the ones who cannot, and then the funding is spread around and this is the way we work. If you didn't have parties, you'd have no funding. Nobody could advertise, and no one could get elected."

Oh, really?

Are you aware right now, that you have a president who was elected on the Internet? He figured it out. When everybody can talk to everyone, you have plenty of funding. A few dollars here, a few dollars there. You talk to millions at the same time, they talk to millions at the same time. It's a new paradigm of communication. The young people know all about it, and you can't stop it. Watch for more from this new paradigm.

It is worldwide communication, one person at a time. It doesn't matter how many laws you pass, and it doesn't matter what you decide about who is in charge of it, you can't stop it. It's out of the bag now, and the communities of the young are going to be communicating. This is how the politicians are going to be communicating to you, literally coming into your home in a holographic form perhaps, explaining their position one by one, without a party. Then you will elect them to your Congress without a party and they will sit in the chairs without a division and there will be no such thing as the "other side of the aisle."

And that, Human Being, is called unity and there is a paradigm that you cannot even imagine. And it's in the works. And then you'll have a Congress that works together and gets things done without the current duality.  ….”

Monday, February 12, 2018

Zijlstra admits faking story about Putin’s ‘greater Russia’ ambitions

DutchNews, February 12, 2018

Photo: Rijksoverheid.nl

Foreign affairs minister Halbe Zijlstra has admitted lying about being at a meeting where Vladimir Putin supposedly set out his plans for a ‘Greater Russia’. 

Zijlstra claimed that he had overheard the Russian president talking about his expansionist ambitions during a gathering of businesspeople at Putin’s dacha in 2006. At the time Zijlstra was working for Shell. But in an interview in the Volkskrant at the weekend he admitted that he had not been at the meeting, but ‘borrowed’ the anecdote from someone whose identity he wanted to protect. 

Prime minister Mark Rutte said Zijlstra’s decision was ‘not sensible’, but he would not be seeking Zijlstra’s resignation. Zijlstra and Rutte are colleagues in the right-wing Liberal (VVD) party. 

‘I made the decision that this is an important geopolitical story with serious implications,’ Zijlstra said. ‘I attributed the story to myself to make sure that the revelations weren’t about the person who was actually there. Because that could have had implications for him or his company.’ 

Rutte said it was ‘not a case of fake news, because he wanted to protect a source. I think he is credible because there is no dispute about the content of the story.’ 

In his original version of the story, Zijlstra claimed he had been a back room in the dacha when he heard Putin define ‘Greater Russia’ as ‘Russia, Belarus, Ukraine and the Baltic states,’ adding that ‘Kazakhstan was nice to have’. 

Doubts about the veracity of the foreign minister’s claims came to light when former senior Shell executive Jeroen van der Veer told the Volkskrant that Zijlstra had not been at the meeting in 2006. Zijlstra admitted he was not present but insisted that the substance of the story was true.

‘Was it sensible to protect my source in the manner that I did? No, it wasn’t. But the information is correct,’ he said. He did not confirm whether Van der Veer was the source.

 The revelation comes at an awkward moment for Zijlstra, who is due to fly out to Moscow on Tuesday for his first official meeting with his Russian opposite number Sergey Lavrov. Geert Wilders’s PVV party has called for a debate so the minister can explain his actions to parliament before he leaves. 

The VVD’s spin doctors used the anecdote in October to counter claims that Zijlstra lacked experience of international affairs when he took office.

Wüst makes history as Netherlands claims two more skating medals

DutchNews, February 12, 2018

Ireen Wüst celebrates winning the 1500m. Photo: Vadim Ghirda/AP

Speed skater Ireen Wüst won her fifth Olympic title in dramatic fashion as Dutch skaters claimed three of the top four places in the women’s 1500 metres. 

Wüst’s victory makes her the most decorated speed skater of all time, with 10 medals altogether. Only swimmer Michael Phelps and sprinter Carl Lewis have won more individual gold medals at the Olympics. 

Wüst was the first of the Dutch team to skate in Pyeongchang, setting a time of 1:54.35. With one race to go her team-mates Marrit Leenstra and Lotte van Beek were in second and third places, but the Dutch were denied a clean sweep as Japan’s Miho Takagi snatched the silver in a time just 0.2 seconds slower than Wüst. 

The victory made up for Wüst’s disappointment in the 3000 metres final on Sunday when she was surprisingly edged out by team-mate Carlijn Achtereekte as the Netherlands won all three medals. 

She told NOS: ‘I won my first gold medal exactly 12 years ago but to have five feels unreal. It’s come full circle, it’s a dream come true.’ 

Leenstra, who edged out Van Beek for the bronze by 0.01 seconds, said she was relieved to win a medal after a string of fourth places in major championships. 

‘It’s not gold, which is always what you’re aiming for, but I’m just so glad to finally get on the podium,’ she said. 

Wüst can add to her medal tally in the 1000 metres on Wednesday and the team pursuit next week. 

Earlier snowboarder Cheryl Maas finished in a disappointing 23rd place after falling on both runs of the slopestyle final. 

Strong winds delayed the event by 75 minutes, but Maas questioned whether the competition should have gone ahead at all. ‘These are no conditions to compete in. Nobody knew whether they’d make their landing or how far they could get.’  

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Sunday, February 11, 2018

Sven Kramer wins gold in the 5,000 metres – for third time in a row

DutchNews, February 11, 2018

Sven Kramer celebrates his third Olympic gold in the 5,000 metres. Photo: AP
Photo/John Locher

Speed skater Sven Kramer successfully defended his 5,000 metre Olympic title for the second time on Sunday, winning the race in a new Olympic record of 6.09.76. 

The silver went to Canada’s Ted-Jan Bloemen, who had an undistinguished career in speed skating in the Netherlands before moving to Canada in 2014. Norway’s Sverre Lunde Pedersen picked up the bronze. 

Kramer took his first 5,000 metres medal – the silver – 12 years ago in Turin, won gold in Vancouver and again in Sochi. A delighted Kramer, 31, told broadcaster NOS after Sunday’s race: ‘I’m glad it happened again.’ 

Kramer is also competing in the 10,000 metres later in the games – an Olympic title which has yet eluded him.

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Clean sweep for Dutch women in Olympics 3,000 metre speed skating

DutchNews, February 10, 2018

Carlijn Achtereekte celebrates her victory. Photo: AP Photo/Petr David Josek 

Carlijn Achtereekte was the surprise winner of the gold medal in the 3,000 speed skating event at the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics on Saturday, as the Dutch women swept the board. 

Achtereekte, who won the race in 3.59.21, narrowly beat team mate and defending champion Ireen Wüst into second place. Antoinette de Jong completed the all-Dutch winners podium. 


Elsewhere, Sjinkie Knegt picked up the silver medal in the men’s short track 1,500 metre event. Knegt finished just behind South Korea’s Lim Hyo-jun. 

Knegt’s medal is only the second ever won by the Dutch in the short track events. He took bronze in the 1,000 metres in the Sochi games. 

Earlier there was disappointment for the Dutch women short track team when none of them qualified for the final. 

The games are already over for the Netherlands’ youngest team mate. Snowboarder Niek van der Velden, who is just 17, broke his arm after falling during training.

‘The wind carried me a little further then I was pleased with and I had to take a slam,’ he said in English on Instagram. ‘I’m bummed out that I couldn’t compete because I was really excited to go, but I’ll be back in no time!’

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Rabobank settles US money laundering charge for €300m

DutchNews, February 8, 2018

Rabobank’s headquarters in Utrecht. Photo: Depositphotos.com

Rabobank has settled a long-running charge that one of its US subsidiaries – RNA – laundered money for Mexican drugs cartels and deliberately withheld information from the authorities. 

The settlement means Rabo will not have to undergo prosecution in the US, the Volkskrant said on Thursday. 

The bank has forfeited nearly $370m (€298m) for anti-money laundering funds that authorities say allowed untraceable money transfers on behalf of criminals and for hiding information from US regulators. That includes a $50 million fine the bank will pay to the US treasury. 

The case involves a RNA branch in Calexco, a US city on the Mexican border, which US authorities had been monitoring since 2006. A formal investigation on laundering Mexican drugs money through three accounts at the branch was launched in 2013.

Labour’s senate leader quits over holiday and home rent

DutchNews, February 8, 2018

Marleen Barth. Photo: Lex Draijer/PvdA via Wikimedia Commons

The leader of the Labour party in the senate has resigned after coming under fire for not living up to the job. 

Last month it emerged that Barth had tried to have the rent on the home she shares with her husband Jan Hoekema in Wassenaar reduced after he resigned as mayor. They lived at the mayor’s official residence and wanted to stay there longer. 

Then earlier this week, Barth was not in the senate for the key debate on changing Dutch organ donation laws because she was on holiday in the Maldives.

In a statement, Barth said that the holiday had been planned for some time, after a ‘tough and personally unhappy year’. 

‘I have come to realise that continuing to represent the Labour party in the senate will do more harm than good, and that is the last thing that I want,’ she said. 

She will be replaced in the senate by Wouter van Zandbrink and her job as party leader will be taken over by her deputy André Postema.

2,100 dairy farms face probes in ‘too many multiple births’ fraud

DutchNews, February 8, 2018



The number of dairy farms suspected of fiddling the books about the age of the cows they have, has soared to 2,100, farm minister Carola Schouten told MPs on Thursday. 

By passing older calves off as younger animals, farmers can get round strict rules on manure and phosphate reduction. Adult cows are more polluting, so farmers are claiming that their cows have given birth to twins or triplets, hiding the true ages of some calves. 

The fraud first came to light last month, when ministry inspectors found fraud in the registration of calves on half the 93 farms they visited within a week. 

Since then, the inspectors have been comparing different registration systems and have found possible fraud on 2,100 farms. 

‘I consider the scale of the fraud extremely concerning,’ Schouten told MPs in a briefing. ‘We have to prevent farms which stick to the rules being disadvantaged by those that fiddle their books.’ 

Lies

The affected farms have been banned from selling or buying new cattle until their administration has been approved. Farmers found to have lied about the ages of their animals face a reduction in subsidies or criminal prosecution. 

At the end of last year, the NRC revealed that farmers are also committing fraud on a wide scale when it comes to manure. Farmers are forging their accounts, illegally trading their manure or dumping more on their land than permitted by law, while transport companies are fiddling lorry weights and making unrecorded trips to dump manure at night, the paper said. 

In total, the NRC found that 36 of the 56 manure processing and distribution companies in the two regions had been fined for fraud, or suspected of fraud, in what the paper calls the ‘manure conspiracy’.

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Dutch farmers protest fracking as govt set to cut gas output

Yahoo – AFP, Jo Biddle, Jan HENNOP, February 2nd, 2018

Dutch farmers protest fracking as govt set to cut gas output

The Hague (AFP) - The Dutch government Thursday appeared poised to meet demands to halve production at Europe's biggest gas field, as dozens of farmers mounted tractors to protest damaging earthquakes in the region.

Economics Minister Eric Wiebes said he wanted to cut output in the northern Groningen gas field "as soon as possible" to a new recommended level of 12 billion cubic metres.

But first he said he wanted to discuss the issue with neighbours France and Germany, hoping to make a decision next month.

Dozens of Groningen farmers meanwhile arrived in The Hague with their tractors to protest against fracking, as MPs debated the issue in parliament.

The drama came as the Dutch mine safety board urged the government Thursday to take drastic action, seeking to halt the earthquakes which have plagued the region for years.

"A major intervention is necessary in order to properly meet the safety standard and to reduce the risk of damage," the board said.

Although no-one can predict when earthquakes will happen in the northern region, "we advise the minister to reduce the gas production as soon as possible to a maximum production level of 12 billion cubic metres per annum."

This would be well below the current gas production of some 21.6 billion cubic metres, which was set in April 2017, and was already drastically scaled back from 53.9 billion cubic metres in 2013.

'Homes falling apart'

Residents have increasingly called for all gas production to be halted in the region.

"All our homes are falling apart," Annemarie Heite, 47, told AFP as she joined other farmers with their tractors at a protest close to the parliament, adding the problem had been "ignored for the past five years by our government."

"These are man-made quakes and combined with the clay soil we have in Groningen everything is falling apart, our cultural heritage, our farms, our churches and eventually also the people."

The low magnitude earthquakes are said to result from huge air pockets left underground because of gas extraction.

But tempers rose after more than 900 homes were damaged in early January when Groningen province was hit by a 3.4-magnitude quake -- its largest since 2012.

"Farmers are usually not protesters. They stay at home. But if their businesses are being ruined, you go bankrupt," Harm Wiegersma, from the Dutch dairy farmers union, told AFP.

"This is a clear call for help from farmers," he added.

Gasunie, which transports gas in the Netherlands and northern Germany, said however such a radical cut in Groningen gas risked leaving homes without heating next winter.

Inspector General of Mines, Theodor Kockelkoren, admitted there were "large uncertainties" in the latest assessment.

"We therefore choose to be on the conservative side. After all, it concerns the safety of the inhabitants of Groningen," he added.

NAM, the energy company responsible for the gas extraction, is half-owned by Shell and ExxonMobil and has been extracting gas from the massive Groningen field since 1963.

Last year, a total of 18 quakes measuring 1.5 magnitude or higher were measured in the Groningen gas field, according to the Royal Dutch Meteorological Institute (KNMI).

Compensation will be paid

Top officials from ExxonMobil, NAM and Shell met MPs late Thursday and vowed that thousands of compensation claims for damage to homes and businesses would be paid.

"NAM is financially robust," said Marjan van Loon, chief executive of Shell Netherlands.

"All the bills will be paid," she stressed, adding Shell and ExxonMobil would discuss how the costs would be divided up.

On Wednesday, the Dutch government announced it was setting up a new independent commission next month to assess all claims.

It will handle some 6,000 outstanding claims filed before March last year, as well as another 8,000 registered since then.

The aim is to have as many claims as possible settled by July, with the government then claiming the money back from NAM.

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