April 23, 2019

Ambassador Odette Melono Assumes Office as OPCW Deputy Director- General

THE HAGUE, Netherlands— 15 January 2019 —Ambassador Odette Melono of Cameroon joined the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) yesterday as the as new Deputy Director-General. She is the fourth person to hold this office since the Organisation was established in 1997. She succeeds Ambassador Hamid Ali Rao of India. The Director-General of the OPCW, H.E. Mr Fernando Arias, extended a warm welcome to the new Deputy Director-General and stated: “I look forward to working with Ambassador Melono during this crucial time for our Organisation and am confident that her insight, experience, and remarkable knowledge of chemical disarmament…

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The city with a worldwide view

By the Honourable Pauline Krikke, Mayor of The Hague. That’s how I have come to know The Hague since I became Mayor on 17 March 2017. Of course, I already knew of The Hague’s particular reputation as a diplomatic centre and as the city of peace and justice. But it was really only after I became involved in the day-to-day aspects of the job that I started to understand just how much that international element is a quintessential part of The Hague. Not just in many specific places in our city but also while on foreign trips. I met many diplomats and…

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The Peace Palace: Temple of Peace for the World

 By Sheila Turabaz Mr. Erik de Baedts is the General Director of the Carnegie Foundation-Peace Palace and Treasurer of the Hague Academy of International Law since 2015. A soft-spoken yet determined man with a strong vision; Mr. De Baedts possesses a wealth of knowledge on issues related to peace and justice and has found his calling: enhancing the mission of the Peace Palace as a temple of peace for the world. We sat down for an in-depth interview with Mr. De Baedts to discuss his views on peace (through law), reflect on the past of the Peace Palace as well…

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European state of mind

By H.E. Ms. Andrea Gustović-Ercegovac, Ambassador of Croatia to the Kingdom of the Netherlands. After joining NATO in April 2009 and the EU in July 2013, we can say that our European integration project is reaching a completion stage. Our position is that of a European partner and a connecting country between Eastern, Central and Western Europe. Our focus is on what unites the EU today, and much less on what could divide us. We should jointly engage to ensure prosperity and security of our citizens. Europe is going through a turbulent time with anti-immigrant populist politics becoming more prominent,…

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Negotiations at the heart of the skill set of a diplomat

By Ron Ton, Director of Clingendael Academy Who said negotiations in diplomacy is easy? Negotiating in bilateral relations, within international organisations, in trade and investment, with conflicting parties, lobby groups or NGO’s or at global international conferences, it all should be in the negotiation skills set of a diplomat. It’s not only the variety in the context which makes negotiations complex for diplomats. Also, changing policy concerns entered the diplomatic negotiation arena, in the field of sustainable development issues, refugee crises, cyber security or the digital agenda. At the same time the number of non-state actors trying to influence international…

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Working together for a world free of chemical weapons

By H.E. Mr Fernando Arias, Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons   At the end of July, I took office as the Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). As the implementing body for the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), the OPCW not only oversees the global endeavour to permanently and verifiably eliminate chemical weapons but also works to prevent the proliferation of dangerous chemicals and to improve the safety and security of the management of such chemicals. We must take into account the fact that we live surrounded by chemicals (used in…

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Australia and the Netherlands: 400 years of shared history

Ambassador Neuhaus attended the Invictus Family & Friends Day in Doorn for the Dutch athletes representing the Netherlands at the 2018 Invictus Games in October in Sydney, Australia. Australia’s new Ambassador to the Netherlands, H.E. Mr.  Matthew Ernest Keith Neuhaus, comes to The Hague with a background in international law, multilateralism and Africa (he grew up in East Africa and has served as Ambassador in Zimbabwe and Nigeria). “My career anchors” he calls them. As a Masters student at Cambridge University he first visited the International Court of Justice in The Hague in 1986 for a mock court case –…

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Cuba, Preserving the Cultural Underwater Heritage

Cuba and the Kingdom of the Netherlands signed a Memoradum of Understanding on Preservation of Cultural Underwater Heritage. By H.E. Ms. Soraya Alvarez, Ambassador of Cuba to the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Last July 11 on the occasion of celebration of the 116th anniversary of the diplomatic relations between the Republic of Cuba and the Kingdom of the Netherlandshave signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Preservation of Underwater Cultural Heritage between the National Council of Cultural Heritage of Cuba (CNPC) and the Rijksdienstvoor het CultureelErfgoed (RCE) of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. In the premises of the Second Palace…

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An Austrian update on Netherlands and EU Relations

Sitting in a grand living room surrounded by unique Austrian paintings and beautiful mirrors belonging to the ancient house of Austria, the property of her government for more than 30 years, H.E. Ambassador Heidemaria Gürer talks fluently about how Austria is doing and the present state of the nation’s relationship with the Netherlands. Ambassador Gürer is the head of the Austrian Diplomatic mission, also acting as a representative to some 50 bilateral and multilateral organizations sitting in the Netherlands. Some have commented that she is the most accessible, open and friendly Austrian ambassador to have graced the Netherlands; perhaps it is…

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Thailand towards an enhanced partnership with the Netherlands

An article to celebrate the National Day of the Kingdom of Thailand By H.E Ms. Eksiri Pintaruchi, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Thailand to the Kingdom of the Netherlands.   5th December marks Thailand’s National Day, Birthday Anniversary of His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej (King Rama IX) and the Father’s Day of Thailand. In this connection, this article celebrates such auspicious occasions. The Thai-Dutch relations started off at the beginning of the 17th Century with next year to reach 415th Anniversary of diplomatic relations. The site of the old trading station, called “New Amsterdam” by the Dutch or…

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