Justice Min. to revoke terror suspects' Dutch citizenship

Ferdinand Grapperhaus
Ferdinand Grapperhaus (front, left) at the International Missions Remembrance Medal during the World Forum in The Hague. Nov. 1, 2018 Photo: Ministry of Foreign Affairs / Flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0

Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus of Justice and Security started procedures to revoke the Dutch citizenships of suspected terrorists, he said in parliament on Tuesday. How many suspects are involved, or who they are, he refused to say, AD reports.

Previously the Minister announced that two brothers convicted of terrorism would lose their Dutch passports. This time is different, because it involves suspects against whom criminal cases are still ongoing - they have not been convicted yet. 

So far at least six men lost their Dutch nationality because they joined terrorist organizations, according to the newspaper. It is only possible to revoke someone's Dutch passport if he or she has dual nationality - the government is not allowed to make someone stateless. Revoking the terrorist suspects' Dutch citizenship means that they can no longer legally travel to the Netherlands or other Schengen countries.

Grapperhaus working to revoke jihadists' Dutch citizenship is somewhat of a surprise. Before he became a Minister, he argued for jihadists being allowed to return to the Netherlands, so that they can stand trial. This was reason enough for PVV leader Geert Wilders to try and stop Grapperhaus being appointed Minister of Justice and Security.