View Full Version : More Dutch Troops Could Be Bound for Afghanistan
08-25-2005, 10:28 AM
More Dutch Troops Could Be Bound for Afghanistan
The Netherlands could send 1,000 more troops to Afghanistan early next year to help in reconstruction work, a report by the Dutch news agency ANP said Aug. 24.
They would be part of a civil-military Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) in the southern province of Uruzgan.
The Dutch government is due to make a final decision in September or October, the agency said, quoting sources close to the government.
The defense ministry refused to confirm the report.
“NATO has asked member states to see how they might be able to contribute more in Afghanistan and in this context we are considering how the Netherlands could commit itself at the military level, but we are in an orientation phase,” a spokesman told AFP.
“No option has been endorsed and the head of the armed forces still has to give his advice to the minister who will then have to pass it on to the government.”
In June, Dutch Foreign Minister Ben Bot indicated that the idea of sending a second PRT team to Afghanistan, in cooperation with other countries, was being considered.
The Dutch PRT mission in the Baghlan region in the north of Afghanistan has been extended to October 2006.
For the full text, go to:
translated from the defence department I think
1000 men extra for southern Afghanistan
24 augustus 2005
DEN HAAG (ANP) - The Netherlands will probably send one thousand extra troops to the south of Afghanistan to help the reconstruction effort of the country. The cabinet will make a decision about this in September or October.
The mission will be the second socalled PRT (provincial reconstructionteam) manned by Dutchmen in Afghanistan, but is a lot more dangerous then the current PRT in the north of the country. For the new mission the defence department has it's eye on the province Uruzgan, between Kabul and Kandahar. In the region Kandahar are now 180 Dutch 'special forces' and 80 airforce personnel active.
It is still far from peacefull in Uruzgan, with Taliban units fighting American soldiers and the Afghan military. Late july the Americans killed about 45 Taliban-supporters in Uruzgan. Last week Afghan security forces killed five Taliban-fighters.
Only after the Americans have ,,cleansed'' the area can the province be handed over to ISAF and can the PRT begin it's work. The Dutch PRT will work closely together with the Brittish and Canadians.
Because of the difficult circumstances and serious risks in Uruzgan, defence wants to send a ,,robust battallion'' with extensive ,,force protection'', units that are trained and equiped to protect the other troops. Apache's might possibly be deployed and F16 aircraft can also be used for airsupport.
A spokseman for minister Kamp of Defence does not want to comment on details about the preperations. He does confirm that there are political and military talks about the wish from NATO to extend the ISAF mandate to the south of Afghanistan. ,,but the fase of political agreement has not been reached.'' according to the spokesman.
what the lefties think about it:
GroenLinks wants clarification about Afghanistan mission
DEN HAAG - GroenLinks in the second chamber wants clarification of ministers Bot (foreign affairs) and Kamp (defence) their plans to send 1000 troops to the southern Afghan province of Uruzgan. The PvdA has large hesitations about the mission in the south of Afghanistan.
GroenLinks-member Karimi travelled earlier this month through Afghanistan for 10 days and heard about the plans for the new Dutch mission with a socalled provincial reconstructionteam. She is, due to the fighting, very concerned about the mission.
Karimi: "It is rediculous that Defence has allready made fargoing preperations, without informing the government. The province is very insecure with an ever more active Taliban. How can the goverment make form an opinion, if we are given so little information about the special forces mission in Kandahar?"
Karimi has allready asked questions about the proposed plans for the PRT in Uruzgan. She also wants clarity about Red Cross reports that there are a lot of dead and captured in Afghanistan but relatively few wounded. "this could be explained by a preffered 'shoot to kill policy with the Americans", according to Karimi
Koenders (PvdA) responds "lauw" (can't translate, neither hot or cold) to the plans for a PRT in Uruzgan. "If we are going to agree with it NATO is going to have to deal with the situation very different then with the PRT's in the north of the country. And defence is going to have to be more open about the mission in Kandahar. And military and humanitarian law are going to have to fully apply." Koenders has no problem with the risks for the Dutch troops. "so long as NATO is going to function a lot better and there are enough big countries active in Afghanistan."
Koenders also wants a guaranty that a thousand extra troops for Afghanistan does not mean that Defence cant do any more missions in Africa. Koenders has been making a case for a Dutch military contribution for a peacekeeping mission in Africa for a while now.
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