Dutch gov't considering changes to military mission in Afghanistan

Commander of the Armed Forces, Lieutenant Admiral Rob Bauer watching a dog demonstration during a visit to Dutch soldiers on mission in Afghanistan, 25 Dec 2017
Commander of the Armed Forces, Lieutenant Admiral Rob Bauer watching a dog demonstration during a visit to Dutch soldiers on mission in Afghanistan, 25 Dec 2017. (Photo: Defensie)

The Dutch government is examining possibilities for adjusting the Netherlands' contribution to the military mission in Afghanistan. Exactly what changes will be made is not yet clear, the Telegraaf reports.

The Netherlands has around 100 soldiers in Afghanistan for advisory work that forms part of the mission Resolute Support. On Wednesday Defense Minister Ank Bijleveld spoke with her American counterpart James Mattis in Washington. Mattis again asked Bijleveld to deploy more soldiers to the Afghanistan mission.

Last summer the government decided that it does not want to substantially expand its contribution to this mission, according to the newspaper. Adjustments to the Netherlands' contribution may entail sending other units or equipment. NATO previously asked the Netherlands to send scarce resources, like helicopters.

"Our commitment to Afghanistan still requires a long-term approach", Bijleveld said after meeting with Mattis, according to the Telegraaf. 

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