"Discrimination against foreigners in its purest form”

The Chairman of the Flemish Greens Wouter Van Besien has lodged a complaint with the High Council for Justice against the Antwerp Public Prosecutor Herman Dams. Mr Van Besien has accused Mr Dams of being guilty of discrimination. During the weekend, in an interview with the daily ‘De Standaard’ Mr Dams called for people to report anything suspicious that they might see in their street or the area around their home.

Nothing wrong with that you might think, were it not that one of the things Mr Dams cited as being suspicious was foreign-registered cars being parked in the area.

“I was shocked”, said Mr Van Besien. “Mr Dams called on people to call the police if they saw a car with a foreign number-plate parked in their street. We don’t have any problem at all with the Public prosecutor saying that minor offences also need to be tackled and asking the public to take responsibility."

"However, what he was saying was at times the purest form of discrimination against foreigners. I would like to ask him to withdraw his words”, Mr Van Besien told De Standaard.

"Apparently we should leave a Belgian-registered van alone, but if we see a foreign-registered one we should call the police. Mr Dams wants one rule for one and a different rule for another.”

The Green’s Chairman also finds it strange that “The Public Prosecutor gave the impression that serious crime is no longer important."

In the interview Mr Dams had said that “Nobody loses any sleep when 800 kilos of cocaine is found in a load of bananas in a boat at Antwerp Docks.”

Mr Van Besien responds by saying “Well I do lose sleep about drug trafficking and fraud with diamonds. There is of course a link between drug seizures in the docks and the small-time dealer on the street.”