Netherlands, Seychelles need to tackle issue of rising seas together, new ambassador says
Discussions between Brouwer and Ramkalawan also touched on human rights. (Seychelles Nation)
(Seychelles News Agency) - Both the Netherlands and Seychelles are coastal countries concerned by the rise in sea levels, and the two nations need to tackle the issue together, said the newly accredited ambassador.
The Ambassador of Netherlands to Seychelles, Maarten Brouwer, presented his credentials to President Wavel Ramkalawan on Tuesday.
"We have been able to catch up on a number of issues that we share. Similar to Seychelles, the Netherlands is a coastal country and we face the same environmental problems with the rise of sea level. And this is a concern that we need to tackle together," said Brouwer.
Discussions between Brouwer and Ramkalawan also touched on human rights.
"Seychelles attaches a lot of value to human rights. I have been briefed on the different progress that has been made by the government and how they would like to move forward in the coming years," said the new ambassador.
Brouwer also met with Vice President Ahmed Afif with whom the discussion focused mainly on economic issues and the impact of COVID-19.
"Both countries have been struck hard by COVID-19. Therefore, we have stressed the necessity of international solidarity. I hope those who have been infected would have a very quick recovery," said the ambassador.
Another subject discussed related to policies governing the media and freedom of expression.
"We are totally in line with our approach when it comes to the media and freedom of expression. Sometimes there are actions and measures that need to be taken, but it has also a lot to do with building trust in a society where each one of us can respect each other's opinion," said Brouwer.
In the World Press Freedom Index of 2021, Seychelles improved its ranking for a third consecutive year, climbing 11 spots to 52nd out of 180 countries. The index, which is compiled through a survey, is published by Reporters Without Borders (RWB), a Paris-based non-governmental organisation.
Brouwer will be based in Kenya on a four-year mandate.
Seychelles, an archipelago in the western Indian Ocean, established diplomatic relations with the Netherlands in April 1977.