Apology for the Netherlands’ role in the history of slavery

In a speech on 19 December 2022, Prime Minister Mark Rutte apologised for the past actions of the Dutch State: to enslaved people in the past, everywhere in the world, who suffered as a consequence of those actions, as well as to their daughters and sons, and to all their descendants, up to the present day.

The Prime Minister gave the apology at the National Archives in The Hague, in the presence of representatives of organisations that have pressed for acknowledgement of the effects of slavery.

In Suriname and on Aruba, Curaçao, St Maarten, Bonaire, St Eustatius and Saba, members of the government will meet with organisations and authorities to discuss what this apology means in each of those places.