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Dutch Approach

Documentary film, 2000, 200 min.

The Free Southern Moluccan Youngsters not only strove for a free Ambon, but also for recognition by the Dutch government. Their violent train hijackings at Wijster and De Punt and their occupations of the consulate and a school put the Moluccans, who had always felt disregarded in the Netherlands, in the centre of attention. The reaction of the government, called the Dutch Approach abroad, consisted of playing for time and trying to outargue them. Still, at De Punt tough military action was eventually taken. In an evaluation that had long been kept a secret, the prime minister at the time Joop den Uyl called it an `execution'. Director René Roelofs reconstructs the story chronologically and almost exclusively by cross-editing interviews with hijackers, hostages and involved ministers like Dries van Agt and Max van der Stoel. In the process, Roelofs pays ample attention to the decision-making processes and the attendant discussions.

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