Dutch not involved in drone strikes

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The Netherlands does not collaborate with illegal assassinations with drones. This is what Minister Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert of Defense said Wednesday in a Parliamentary debate. 

The Minister does not see any indication that other countries enforce these kinds of deadly actions, using information that has been gathered by Dutch intelligence services.

Hennis-Plaschaert's apparent certainty in the matter is doubted by the SP, the CDA and the D66 in particular. According to these parties, it is impossible to inquire whether foreign secret services of, for example the United States, also use Dutch intelligence information to target alleged terrorists or other individuals with the unmanned aircrafts.

The Minister, who could not give too much information about this in public, pointed out that the military intelligence service MIVD is allowed to share information with partner countries during military operations. It is not regular, therefore, that services inform each other if information is also used for other purposes.

It is also not clear on what pieces of information other countries carry out operations, the minister presses. The adds that the Dutch services only "collect information on the basis of Dutch assignments."

During missions, such as in Afghanistan and now Mali, a good intelligence position is crucial for the safety of the soldiers as well as the local population, Hennis says. The Netherlands would never grant a request for intelligence from another country if there was any indication that this information would be used for something that goes against international laws, she maintains.

The House of Representatives believes that the Cabinet should state explicit conditions before sharing intelligence that this must not be used for illegal assassinations.

The Netherlands does have drones, but they are not armed. There also aren't any plans to supply these drones with any weapons, the minister states.