THE HAGUE, Netherlands (HPD) — China has reportedly set up dozens of “overseas police stations” that activists fear could be used to track and harass dissidents in other countries as part of its crackdown. Beijing against corruption.
Information about such venues underscored concerns about the ruling Chinese Communist Party’s influence on its citizens abroad, sometimes in ways considered illegal by other countries, as well as undermining democratic institutions and stealing economic and political secrets. by organizations affiliated with the state of a single party.
The non-governmental organization Safeguard Defenders Foundation, based in Madrid, published a report last month called “110 Overseas. Chinese Transnational Policing Gone Wild” (“110 out of the country. The Chinese transnational police went crazy”) that focused on Chinese official installations abroad.
The Dutch government said this week that it was investigating whether two of those clandestine police stations — one at a virtual office in Amsterdam and the other at a physical address in Rotterdam — were set up in the Netherlands.
“We are investigating the activities of these so-called police centers. Once there is more clarity on the matter, we will decide on the appropriate action,” the Dutch Foreign Ministry said in a statement sent to The Associated Press. “We have not been informed about these centers through diplomatic channels.”
“If the events described in the Safeguard Defenders report threaten to strengthen the sense of intimidation and threats among the Dutch Chinese community, that is a bad thing, and the government is of the opinion that action should be taken against this,” the ministry added.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Mao Ning said Thursday that “Chinese public security authorities strictly observe international law and fully respect the judicial sovereignty of other countries.”
A day earlier, another ministry spokesman, Wang Wenbin, also denied that Beijing was doing anything wrong, calling the facility a service to help overseas Chinese.