Government to intensify mobile immigration control

Mobile immigration checks are to be expanded to enable a more effective response to people smuggling and illegal residence in the Netherlands. There will be more extensive checks on trains, as the current rules do not in practice offer enough scope for a flexible approach. In the future it will be possible to check more trains and more individual compartments. The cabinet has approved this change to the Aliens Decree 2000 proposed by Fred Teeven, Minister for Immigration.

It will also be possible to act more effectively if large numbers of illegal immigrants enter the Netherlands, or if there are specific indications that this is about to happen. When these situations arise the Royal Military and Border Police (KMar) will temporarily be able to carry out more extensive checks on roads, waterways and flight routes. 

There is reason to believe that the current influx of Eritrean asylum seekers is the result of organised people smuggling. The government is aware that international trains to the Netherlands are being used for this purpose. Enabling the KMar to conduct more extensive checks puts them in a better position to tackle the problem. Aliens attempt to avoid checks by spreading out throughout the train or moving about when they take place.

KMar, the Public Prosecution Service, the National Police, the Immigration and Naturalisation Service and the Expertise Centre on Human Trafficking and People Smuggling are working together closely to obtain a better understanding of the increased influx of immigrants and investigate organised people smuggling. The main objective of expanding mobile immigration control is to support these operations. The government aims to bring the amendments to the Aliens Decree 2000 into force on 1 July 2014.

The cabinet has agreed to submit the draft decree to the Council of State for an advisory opinion. The Council's response will be published at the same time as the amended decree.