-- The Netherlands denounced the call by Alabama Gov. Bob Riley for
a nationwide boycott of Aruba to protest what Riley called the
Dutch Caribbean islands failure to properly investigate the
disappearance of Alabama teen Natalee Holloway on May 30.
Holloway-Twitty, the mother of the missing girl, joined Riley in
urging the boycott.
Eenennaam, ambassador of the Netherlands, said he had been
reassured by the U.S. government that the action of the governor of
Alabama does not represent the foreign policy of the
There is no U.S.
government boycott or travel restriction on U.S. citizens visiting
said that the call for a tourism boycott of Aruba ignores the fact
that the Aruban authorities, actively assisted by the Netherlands,
have done their utmost, and will continue to do so, to solve the
protectorate of the Netherlands, falls under the Dutch judicial
The call for a
boycott was also condemned by Arubas Strategic Communications Task
Force, a group of tourism, hotel and government officials in Aruba
set up to address issues surrounding the case.
reaction was mixed.
Renee Pierce of
Giselles Travel in Sacramento, Calif., suggested that instead of
boycotting Aruba, Riley should expend his efforts by highlighting
the problems of missing/exploited children of all nations. Create
some dialogue with world leaders regarding these crimes and make a
difference in the lives of grieving families everywhere.
Gail Kraft of
Global VIP Travel in Piscataway, N.J., agreed.
will hurt the economy of this tiny island so dependent on tourism,
she said. I hope Americans look at this action by the governor and
Mrs. Twitty as that of a grieving mother pointing blame on a
governments lack of experience in this type of case.
But Helen Plummer
of Bella Bella Travel in Salinas, Calif., agreed with the boycott
as a means of discouraging travel to Aruba.
I have not
recommended nor will I recommend travel to Aruba by family, friends
or clients, Plummer said.
to be heartsick at the lack of cooperation by the Aruban government
to provide closure to the horrific crime.
reporter Gay Nagle Myers, send e-mail to [email protected].