Wednesday, September 30, 2015 - 17:07
Netherlands military assisting Afghanistan in Kunduz fight against Taliban
A small contingency of Dutch soldiers were dispatched to Kunduz, Afghanistan, to advise that nation's army as it attempts a counter-offensive against the Taliban in the northern city. Speaking at the lower house of Parliament on Wednesday, Minister of Defense Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert emphasized that the Netherlands is not engaged in any fighting, but serving strictly as strategic counsel. The city was reportedly captured by the Taliban earlier this week, prompting Afghanistan and the United States to order aerial counterstrikes. The Taliban is still blocking access to many parts of Kunduz, and preventing food and relief supplies from entering the city. Five Dutch military members were sent to Kunduz. They are part of the 100 soldiers based in Afghanistan that the Dutch committed to the NATO operation "Resolute Support." It is not the first time the country has sent support to the city. The Netherlands trained Afghanistan policing units in Kunduz from 2011 to 2013, reports broadcaster NOS.