Dutch Swimming Group Urges Lessons for Migrants

Picture taken with a drone shows bathers swimming at the Kaifu-Bad public pool in Hamburg, northern Germany, where temperatures reached up to 26 degrees Celsius on May 17, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / dpa / Axel Heimken / Germany OUT (Photo credit should read AXEL HEIMKEN/AFP/Getty Images)

BRUSSELS (AP) — The Dutch swimming federation is calling for more funding and outreach to ensure as many people as possible in the Netherlands – including migrants – learn to swim.

The call from the Royal Netherlands Swimming Association followed the drowning death of a teenager at a public pool in the southern city of Venlo.

The association said in a statement Tuesday that the Netherlands, with its thousands of kilometers (miles) of canals and rivers and long North Sea coastline, has a long tradition of teaching young children to swim.

It noted: “However, this tradition is not commonplace among residents with a migration background.”

Police say the 16-year-old boy was hauled out of a swimming pool in Venlo and pronounced dead at a hospital. Dutch media report that the victim was Syrian.


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