'This is the Netherlands, you have to answer questions'

US Ambassador to Netherlands Clashes with Dutch Reporters Over Remarks About Muslims

Hoekstra silent over inaccurate Muslim claims on 1st day as US ambassador to Netherlands

It did not go well.

Hoekstra's first false comments were made in 2015, in which the former MI congressman said the "Islamic movement" has sent Europe into "chaos", adding that cars and politicians were being burned inside the Netherlands.

"Do you now reach the conclusion that you were wrong when you stated that politicians and cars were being burned?" one reporter asked, the Times reported.

"I'm not revisiting the issue", Hoekstra replied.

But the reporters were not done with the line of questioning yet.

He has also suggested that former president Barrack Obama may have been aiding the rise of radical Islam on objective, the CNN report said. Hoekstra said he had read the quote, which expresses Adams' hope that only "honest and wise men ever rule under this roof".

An uncomfortable silence followed the question.

Reporters in the Netherlands grilled the new USA ambassador to that country, Peter Hoekstra, on Wednesday, with one journalist questioning whether President Trump's emissary is "an honest and wise man".

Again, silence, as Hoekstra stared around the room.

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According to video from the press conference, it was ended as a person offscreen says, "If you don't have any further questions".

On Wednesday, despite being repeatedly asked at a heated news conference at his residence in The Hague, Hoekstra refused to say whether he still stood by his views. Hoekstra urged the press to move on from the issue, but to no avail.

"The Ambassador made mistakes in 2015, made comments that should not have been made", Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs Steve Goldstein told reporters. "It was simply untrue, so why not take it back?" said Geeraedts. It was awkward, to be honest'.

Hoekstra has been in hot water in the Netherlands for the remarks since he was first confronted by a Dutch journalist, Wouter Zwart, in December. Hoekstra had brazenly denied making those remarks - even though they were captured on videotape - in a one-on-one interview with a Dutch journalist in December. "We'd call that fake news".

Hoekstra's silence when faced with reporters' questions on Wednesday drew a similar response. But he did not clarify whether the apology was meant to include the no-go zone comments when asked on Wednesday.

He said that now that he is a representative of the American administration, his personal opinions or comments are no longer what matters. "One interview has no impact on that". "The other thing I just want to reinforce, this relationship has been maintained by countless people over the last 400 years, this is not about me".

In Hoekstra's comments in 2015, he said areas of the country had been marked "no-go zones" because of terrorism and that "there are politicians that are being burnt".

"And he also plans over the weekend to be available within numerous communities in in the capital, including Muslim communities". But he said politics in the Netherlands differed a bit from the current situation in the United States.

In his first news conference with reporters since being named ambassador by President Donald Trump, the former Michigan GOP lawmaker was asked no less than a half-dozen questions about a claim that he never substantiated, the Times reported.

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