Police will keep visiting Twitter users threatening asylum seekers

Ard van der Steur (Photo: Rijksoverheid.nl/Wikimedia Commons)Ard van der Steur (Photo: Rijksoverheid.nl/Wikimedia Commons)

Police officers are allowed to pay a visit to people who protest against the arrival of asylum seekers in "an abnormal manner" on social media, Justice Minister Ard van der Steur said to the lower house of Dutch parliament on Wednesday, NRC reports.

The police keep an eye on Facebook pages and Twitter accounts and pay a visit to anyone who posts what they consider to be a serious threat. Over the past months asylum seeker-opponents in Sliedrecht, Leeuwarden, Enschede and Kaatsheuvel had officers show up at their doors. Sometimes the municipality ask the police to address an individual, according to NRC.

According to the Minister, officers do not raid the person's home, they ring the doorbell and have a chat, if the person agrees to it.

The VVD believes that this is going too far. "The police is sending out the wrong signal", VVD parliamentarian Ockje Tellegen said, according to news wire ANP. "People should be able to express their concerns."

Van der Steur also stated that he does not intend to appoint more police officers. The opposition parties fear that there are concerned about the police capacity and officers ability to perform all their tasks due to extra duties brought about by the influx of asylum seekers. According to the Minister, there is no money for more officers.