You can read more about this decision in this South African report: https://www.businessinsider.co.za/klm-cancels-long-haul-flights-after-netherlands-travel-restrictions-2021-1. This article, in English, also provides more information on the additional COVID restrictions facing those of us living in the NL.
I suppose this decision is not surprising. On Jan. 14, Dutch Prime Minister, Mark Rutte stated. "If it were possible, I would enforce a ban on all flights traveling to the Netherlands immediately." Needless to say, KLM - which was being propped by the Dutch government - was visibly unhappy. Not to mention all the businesses which require AIR Cargo support, including the flower industry since the Dutch are the largest exporter of flowers in the world. (Surprisingly, this country - the size of NJ and MA combined - is the #2 exporter of food and agricultural goods in the world - 2nd only to the USA).
But Rutte was expressing his obvious frustration with how the Dutch people were behaving during the pandemic, Unfortunately, a lot of that may be the fault of his own government. The Dutch government has appeared to be very reactionary and a tad behind other EU countries. And the lack of enforcement of stated restrictions has led to confusion, frustration, and the Netherlands becoming a "hotspot" in the EU.
For example, early in the pandemic response, Amsterdam and Rotterdam had concerning outbreaks. The government decreed that certain neighborhoods of each city would require residents to wear masks. Huge, temporary flashing signs were put up, it was on the local news, etc. After two weeks, the restrictions were dropped as NO ONE was wearing masks and there was no enforcement.
I traveled - for business - in 2020 and arriving in other EU countries I had to show my passport, tell where I'd been the previous 14 days, and in some cases, even getting my passport stamped when traveling EU to EU. Landing in Milan and Rome, I was greeted by folks in HAZMAT suits and it was required that I have my temperature taken before I was allowed into the terminal to pick up my checked luggage and depart. But upon return to AMS, I've always walked off the plane, through the terminal, directly to my car in the car park or the train... NO CHECKS WHATSOEVER.
In December 2020, when the infection-rate numbers were approaching US proportions, a strict lockdown was introduced. In part, it was a reaction to impending German restrictions. Over the past year, when restrictions have less severe than in neighboring Belgium and Germany, citizens of those countries simply drove across the border to the NL and shopped or had lunch. Thus, in less than 45 days, we went from really few restrictions to now, when we will perhaps have the most restrictive travel rules in the EU.
Will the government step back now that KLM has cut out these flights? The Rutte government is under incredible pressure. Due to a NON-COVID-related scandal, the entire cabinet has been forced to resign. (But with the exception of one minister who was fired, they will all be allowed to stay on until the elections in March). There's a lot of frustration out there. Because we live in The Hague - the seat of government for the country - we probably see and hear more protests than other parts of the NL. Will we see a more right-leaning government elected in March? Will Rutte, who has had a 10-year run, be out? Sounds a little like the USA in 2016...
I was on the phone with a hotelier in South Africa shortly after the flight restrictions to the UK, South American, and South Africa were announced. Their country is wide-open to Americans... and KLM (and connecting through AMS) has been a huge part of their transportation options. Alas, for at least the next four weeks, his clients will have to find alternative routes.