As the final hours of 2016 here in the Netherlands are ticking away I wish all the readers of our blog a very happy and healthy 2017!
2017 will be a very important year for the people of the Netherlands and Indonesia.
In the Netherlands people feel more and more the (financial) stress of the situation from the unstable economic situation within the European Union and with the Euro. There are many uncertainties around the influx of immigrants from Syria and other Arabic and African countries that could lead to tensions with the Dutch citizens when it comes to social matters (like housing) and cultural differences. In March we will have elections in The Netherlands and I have recently become involved with a new and fresh political party so this promises to be a new and busy experience for me!
In Indonesia I feel worried about what I read in the press about the events concerning the Jakarte governor Mr. Ahok. It would be a very sad situation if religious circumstances would challenge the stability of Indonesia. Religion should not be a reason to silence opinions from individuals or groups in a society. I hope for 2017 that the situation in Indonesia stabilizes and the different religious groups can return to live peacefully and practice their religion with respect to the each other.
Nootdorp, 31 december 2016