SP urges introduction of compulsory visas for Albanians

11 April 2019

SP urges introduction of compulsory visas for Albanians

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The SP believes that Albanians should be required to apply for visas to enter the Netherlands. SP Member of Parliament Jasper van Dijk made this proposal during Thursday's parliamentary debate on the high rate of criminality amongst Albanian visitors to the country. Since 2014 Albanians have been able to enter the Netherlands freely as a result of the liberalisation of visa regulations, and this has led to an enormous upsurge in crime. This applies to relatively small-scale offences such as shoplifting and pickpocketing, and more serious matters like dealing in hard drugs, extortion and people-smuggling. This has been accompanied by a rise in demands for asylum from Albanians, applications which are very rarely successful because Albania is regarded as a safe country. Visa liberalisation occurred as a result of many EU member states' determination to accept Albania as a member of the European Union in the foreseeable future, despite the country's high levels of destitution and corruption.

The SP is against any such proposal, and does not believe that Albanians should be free to enter and leave the Netherlands without a visa. “According to the police a large part of the Amsterdam underworld has in recent years been taken over by the Albanian mafia,” says Van Dijk. “The ports of Rotterdam and the Hook of Holland are plagued by Albanian people-smugglers. Visa liberalisation, the europhile parties' wet dream, turns out to be a nightmare. It's caused a great deal of damage. Compulsory visas make registration and deportation possible. As things stand the police have very few instruments to deal with this. Of course, Albanians who come to the Netherlands for good reasons are still most welcome.”

Police and the judiciary in cities such as Amsterdam and Rotterdam support the introduction of obligatory visas. The police talk of a rapid upsurge of Albanians in Dutch criminal circles, with the number of incidents having quadrupled. There are an estimated 20,000 Albanians in the Netherlands. Visas are already required by the UK and Ireland. “A compulsory visa gives the police an important tool for tackling criminality amongst Albanians.”

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