Timmermans calls attention to arrested plane spotters
Minister of Foreign Affairs Frans Timmermans has asked his colleague from the United Arab Emirates for clarity on the three Dutch plane spotters who have been arrested there, a spokesperson for the ministry said yesterday. The three plane spotters were accused of espionage last Tuesday.
Timmermans brought up the incident during a discussion with Sheik Abdullah bin Zayed al-Nahyan at the security conference in Munich, which was held in the last few days. The Minister of Foreign Affairs to the Arab Gulf States was aware of the situation, a spokesperson said. A spokesperson for the department will not offer more detail. The accused men will receive consular support and the Ministry will keep the family up to date. The men, who include a 52-year old from Nieuw-Vennep, are avid plane spotters who, according to the family spokesperson, enjoy photographing planes in far-away countries. "It is suspected that they photographed forbidden objects in restricted areas." There is short phone contact from time to time, and a lawyer has has been arranged.