Dutch authorities said Wednesday they were investigating reports that China had set up two illegal police stations in the Netherlands to harass dissidents.
Dutch media reported that police departments in Amsterdam and Rotterdam had claimed to provide diplomatic assistance, but had not been declared to the Netherlands.
China’s foreign ministry said the reports were “completely false” and that the “gas stations” were meant to help overseas citizens renew their driver’s licenses, among other things.
Two “police stations” set up since 2018 have been used to silence China’s political opponents, broadcaster RTL and investigative website Follow the Money, in the words of a Chinese dissident living in the Netherlands is quoting.
Their report, following a September investigation by Spain-based NGO Safeguard Defenders, said China had set up 54 overseas police centers around the world, including two in the Netherlands.
The Netherlands said it was taking the allegations “seriously”.
“The foreign ministry is currently investigating the activities of the so-called police centre. Dutch foreign ministry spokesman Maxim Hovenkamp told AFP that appropriate action would be taken if there was more clarity on the matter. .
“It is true that we have not been informed of the center through diplomatic channels.”
According to RTL, the first China office was opened in June 2018 by Yeosu local police in Amsterdam and is led by two men who started their careers in the China police and then moved to the Netherlands.
It was named one of the 10 best foreign Chinese police stations in an internal poll last year, it said.
– “Completely lie” –
China’s Fuzhou police stationed a second officer run by a former soldier in the Dutch port city of Rotterdam earlier this year, according to the broadcaster.
A promotional video, set in a nondescript house with no signage, says the office helps “crack down on Fuzhou’s regional and illegal criminal activities related to overseas Chinese.” said RTL.
A Dutch broadcaster interviewed a man who said he was a refugee dissident called Wang Jingyu, who said he had received a call from someone at the Rotterdam police station.
The man is said to have told Wang to return to China to “solve my problems” and “think about my parents”. received.
Wang later received threatening phone calls and messages after demonstrating in front of the Chinese embassy in June.
The Netherlands’ foreign ministry said it had “regular signals” of receiving “threats and threats” from the Dutch-Chinese community and had set up a hotline.
“The ministers of justice, security and foreign affairs have taken note of the safeguard defenders’ report and are taking the content of the report very seriously. Told.
“The report is known to the police and is being taken seriously.”
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin dismissed the report, saying the Chinese government “fully” respects the judicial sovereignty of other countries.
“The related statements are completely false,” a spokesperson said at a routine briefing.
“The main purpose of the service station is to assist Chinese citizens in updating their Chinese driver’s license online and other services.”
https://www.expatica.com/nl/general/dutch-probe-chinese-police-stations-in-netherlands-373181/ Holland investigates Chinese ‘police station’ in Holland