Visas stripped from controversial imams

Minister of Foreign Affairs Bert Koenders has revoked the visas of three Muslim preachers who were scheduled to speak at a benefit in Rijswijk on 8 March. This was supposedly done because these imams are "hate preachers." It is not clear exactly who these imams are.

This was confirmed in a tweet by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The three imams initially received visas as they are not on a blacklist. But the National Coordinator for Counter-terrorism and Security (NCTV) decided to get more information on the imams following publications that called them "hate imams." It was based on that information that Koenders decided to revoke their visas.


Seven international speakers were invited to speak at the benefit. According to de Volkskrant, one of them is the Belgian-Moroccan radical preacher Chadlioui Tarik. He was active in Sharia4Belgium.

Earlier this week, VVD parliamentarian Malik Azmani called on state secretary of security and justice Fred Teeven to deny hateful imams access to the Netherlands by, for example, not granting them a visa.

Last summer, the government announced it would make the work of hateful imams difficult or impossible, if it could so manage. Several parties in the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of parliament, recently asked the government to live up to that promise. “[Deputy Prime] Minister Asscher has promised to reject the visas of radical imams. He and Minister [of Security and Justice] Opstelten now need to add action to those words,” CDA parliamentarian Pieter Omtzig told De Telegraaf.