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Prime minister cuts short Japan mission for EU refugee summit

THE NETHERLANDS. Prime minister Mark Rutte is cutting short his visit to Japan as part of a trade mission to attend a European summit on the refugee crisis, the Volkskrant says on Monday.

Rutte arrived in Japan on Sunday as part of a 120-person delegation to Tokyo but will leave again on Wednesday to fly to Malta for the EU gathering.

Last month, Rutte came under fire for remaining with a trade delegation in Atlanta, missing the major row over the government’s decision to renege on an agreement not to place too many refugees in the tiny village of Oranje.

Three days after the Malta summit, Rutte will head to South Africa for another trade mission – his sixth this year. The prime minister will also visit Kazakstan in December.

According to the Volkskrant, Dutch ministers have been part of 60 different trade missions since they came to power in 2012. Rutte himself has been part of nine.


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