Tuesday, 2 August 2016 - 11:30
Dutch military police force can’t handle extra airport security: Union boss
The Koninklijke Marechaussee - a Dutch police force that works as part of the military and is responsible for airport security - can't keep up with extra security at Schiphol Airport due to under-staffing and a too high workload, Ton de Zeeuw, chairman of union Marechausseevereniging, said to Het Parool. "We can't keep this up for much longer", he said. "The workload is huge and there is not enough staff. The major operation at Schiphol is at the expense of security duties elsewhere." De Zeeuw is referring to extra security measures implemented at the airport on Saturday after a signal about a terrorist threat. Marechaussee officers check cars on the motorways leading up to the airport and more heavily armed forces perform surveillance at the airport itself. "Because of the increased terror threat, many objects get additional security, such as the Binnenhof and Jewish institutions. In addition the deployment is at a maximum because of the migration flows." De Zeeuw said. According to De Zeeuw, the important thing now is to add more people to the Koninklijke Marechaussee as quickly as possible. In total there are currently about 6 thousand Marechaussee officers, of which 1,800 are deployed to Schiphol. At the end of this year, the force will be expanded by 400 officers. But De Zeew feels this is not enough. "We live in a new reality in which it is unsafe. Not only in the Netherlands, but throughout Europe", he said to the Dutch newspaper.