Netherlands expels several Sudanese diplomats over espionage claim
In the past decade, the Netherlands expelled at least three consuls from the Sudanese embassy in The Hague after they turned out to work for the Sudanese intelligence and security service NISS, NRC reported based on ts own research.
The three consuls were accused of monitoring and intimidating members of the Sudanese opposition who had fled to the Netherlands, according to the newspaper. The Netherlands requested that they leave the country between 2012 and 2019. At least one request was based on information from Dutch intelligence service AVID.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed that it requested that one consul leave the Netherlands in 2016. The Ministry told NRC that in July 2016, its Director-General for Political Affairs orally requested that the then Sudanese ambassador dismiss the consul because of his work with the NISS. In this conversation, the Director-General referred to two previous cases, according to the newspaper.
The consul in question only left his post in the Netherlands two years after the request from the Ministry. Foreign Affairs told NRC that the Sudanese embassy promised that the consul would cease his NISS activities, thus "removing the reason for further pressure."
In the past seven years there were multiple reports that the NISS detains and tortures Sudanese asylum seekers who were deported back to Sudan. Despite this, and the fact that the Netherlands knew of at least three consuls who worked for the NISS, the Dutch policy is still to send failed asylum seekers to the Sudanese embassy in The Hague, according to NRC.
Dutch-Sudanese people repeatedly warned the Ministry of Foreign Affairs that NISS agents were working at the Sudanese embassy in The Hague over the past decade, substantiating their warnings with photos of consuls photographing and disrupting opposition rallies and demonstrations, the newspaper wrote. When NRC asked the Ministry about this, it responded that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs includes "documents and information from the Sudanese community" in policy considerations.