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But for Hassan al-Maghroubi, originally from the town of Oujda near the Algerian border, all the talk about ethnic tensions is nothing but unfounded agitation. But otherwise we don't bother anyone here." Hassan is one of what the Dutch call "hangjongeren" ("guys who hang out") -- unemployed men with no prospects of getting jobs. "Dit is mijn landje, ik ben een rasechte Nederlander," he says in Dutch: "This is my country.I'm a purebred Dutchman." A Shift in Mood Slotervaart's most prominent son is former Dutch Prime Minister Wim Kok, who can sometimes be spotted in the morning riding his bike down to the train station along Pieter Calandlaan.He was illiterate when he came to the Netherlands from Morocco at the age of 10, but he was lucky enough to encounter a teacher at a progressive Montessori school who helped him get on track.A Different World There is little evidence of Amsterdam's typical charm in Slotervaart, a neighborhood where bleak concrete apartment blocks cluster around a futuristic-looking town hall.For one Amsterdam mayor, the Netherlands' famous tolerance has gone too far.Morrocan-born Ahmed Marcouch is taking the tough cop approach in a rough Amsterdam neighborhood, pushing his fellow immigrants to integrate. A street festival is in full swing in Amsterdam's Slotervaart neighborhood.Kok, a member of the left-learning Labor Party (Pvd A), lives here because he wanted to set an example.
Like many Dutchmen, he rode his bicycle and loved to eat traditional Dutch stews.
The festival and the speech are nice gestures, but atypical.
Normally life in Slotervaart isn't nearly as convivial as the speakers paint it.
Marcouch, a former police officer, experienced at first hand the unrest that followed the Van Gogh murder.
He wasn't a softie like some of his colleagues, who routinely looked the other way when rowdy mobs swaggered through the streets.