Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Amsterdam Now World Leader in anti-Gay Violence.

EU: The alarm bells have gotten louder as Amsterdam is going thru a violent cultural change.

THE HAGUE, 15/08/07 - Anti-gay violence is more structural in Amsterdam than anywhere else in the world, according to Boris Dittrich of human rights organisation Human Rights Watch. "You can certainly state that Amsterdam's image of gay capital is in a shambles", he stated in newspaper De Telegraaf.

Former centre-left D66 party leader Dittrich is director of Gay Rights at the New York-based Human Rights Watch. He receives regular reports on anti-gay assaults from all over the world. "Incidents take place everywhere, but nowhere is the violence as structural as it is in Amsterdam at present. In my work, I am constantly confronted with it. People are coming up to me and asking me what on earth is happening in The Netherlands. The reports I receive about Amsterdam are shocking".

To an increasing degree, reports about particularly Moroccan youngsters assaulting gays are reaching the media. An increasing number of 'pink' tourists are opting for Berlin or Barcelona. "These cities do not have this problem. All in all you can conclude that our pink image is well and truly smashed", as Dittrich stated in De Telegraaf.

An Amsterdam court yesterday sentenced a 19-year-old immigrant for assaulting a gay couple in the capital on 29 June. He was given a prison sentence of six months, three of which suspended, and 180 hours of community service. This however also settled charges of theft and attempted robbery.

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