Forty-seventh edition of the N&O column / Spooks newsletter

(Date: Mon, 01 Apr 2002 18:19:51 +0200)

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Intelligence profile - Belgium and Luxembourg


General information.

Belgium became independent from the Netherlands on 21-7-1831 and was occupied by Germany during World Wars I and II. It has prospered in the past half century as a modern, technologically advanced European state and member of NATO and the EU. Tensions between the Dutch-speaking Flemings of the north and the French-speaking Walloons of the south have led in recent years to constitutional amendments granting these regions formal recognition and autonomy.

Location : Western Europe, bordering the North Sea, between France and the Netherlands.
Country name : Koninkrijk Belgie / Royaume de Belgique.
Capital : Brussels.
Provinces : Capitol Region Brussel + 10 provinces; Antwerpen, Brabant Wallon, Hainaut, Liege, Limburg, Luxembourg, Namur, Oost-Vlaanderen, Vlaams Brabant, West-Vlaanderen.
Military : The Belgian Forces consist of the following branches:
    Military Army, Navy, Air Force, National Gendarmerie, Medical Service.
Intelligence : See hereafter.


Ministerial Intelligence and Security Committee

Official name in Dutch (Flemish) and French:

The committee is presided by the prime Minister and consist of the Ministers of Interior, Foreign Affairs, and Defense.

The MCIV sets intelligence and security priorities and approves the groups to be investigated.

State Security Service

Official name in Dutch (Flemish) and French:

The SVD is the domestic security service under the Ministry of Interior. The SVD is responsible for countering threats to Belgium, including terrorism and espionage.

General Intelligence and Security Service

Official name in Dutch (Flemish) and French:

ADIV is the military intelligence service which has two "domains" and some special tasks:

The Security Service (Domein Inlichtingen)

It is responsible for military counter espionage and counter intelligence.

ADIV's mission is to collect, analyse and process intelligence that is important for the safety of the country. The service is responsible for the collection of both strategic and operational intelligence from abroad.

The strategic information is collected for the Chiefs of Staff, the Military House of the King, the Prime Minister, Minister of Defense, and the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

The operational information is collected for the staff sections and the commanders of the Belgian forces.

The Belgian law from 30 June 1994, that forbids eavesdropping does also apply to ADIV. The service is however allowed to monitor military radio transmissions from abroad.

The Intelligence Service (Domein Veiligheid)

It collects domestic and foreign intelligence.

The ADIV is responsible for the safety of personnel of the Ministry of Defense, the military equipment, weapons, documents, IT and communication systems. This includes not only the Belgian forces and bases in Belgium, but also NATO forces/bases in Belgium and Belgian forces abroad.

Special tasks.

The Centre for Historical Documentation (Centrum voor Historische Documentatie) is also maintained by the ADIV. These are the archives of the Belgian forces since 1914.

The ADIV is also coordinates the contacts with foreign defense attachés. It has a special Liaison Section for this task.

Rijkswacht / Gendarmerie

The Rijkswacht is a paramilitary force under the Ministry of Interior and is responsible for internal security.


General information.

Founded in 963, Luxembourg became a grand duchy in 1815 and an independent state under the Netherlands. It lost more than half of its territory to Belgium in 1839, but gained a larger measure of autonomy. Full independence was attained in 1867. Overrun by Germany in both World Wars, it ended its neutrality in 1948 when it entered into the Benelux Customs Union and when it joined NATO the following year. In 1957, Luxembourg became one of the six founding countries of the European Economic Community (later the European Union) and in 1999 it joined the euro currency area.

Location : Western Europe, between France and Germany.
Country name : Grand Duché de Luxembourg.
Capital : Luxembourg.
Districts : 3; Diekirch, Grevenmacher, Luxembourg.
Military : Military Army; note - the government abolished the Gendarmerie.
Intelligence : See hereafter.


Very little is known about Luxembourg's Intelligence and Security services. Info is always welcome.

The Ministry of State has two Intelligence and Security services; the SRDE and HCSE, while the military "Deuxième Bureau de l'Armée" is the responsibility of the Ministry of Defense.


Selected sources and reading:

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