THE HAGUE, Netherlands – Opponents of new Dutch legislation giving intelligence agencies broad powers to monitor electronic communications are a step closer to forcing a national advisory referendum on whether the law should come into force.
The country's electoral commission said Friday that it has received more than 10,000 requests for a referendum on the law, and will now open a window of opportunity from Sept. 4-16 in which it must receive a total of 300,000 requests. If that threshold is crossed, a referendum will be ordered.
It would be only the second such advisory referendum in the Netherlands. The first, held last year, rejected a European Union pact with Ukraine. However, the government later said it would ratify the pact despite the result of the non-binding referendum.