A group of Dutchbat veterans who were at the fall of Srebrenica in 1995 are going to sue the Dutch State for sending the soldiers on an "impossible mission". They want a resolution including apologies and a symbolic amount in compensation, lawyer Micheal Ruperti confirmed to RTL Nieuws after a report by AD.
In the past five years, four soldiers left the Dutch armed forces due to right-wing extremist statements or behavior. Military intelligence service MIVD launched a total of 21 investigations into possible extremism in the armed forces, the vast majority of which involved suspicions of right-wing extremism, the Volkskrant reports based on a list the MIVD drew up after the newspaper appealed to the Intelligence and Security Services Act.
The Netherlands will not send ground troops to Syria, Defense Minister Ank Bijleveld said on Friday. "There is no mandate for it, and Mr. Hoekstra knows that too." The Dutch government did not inform the United States embassy or government about this, US Ambassador to the Netherlands Pete Hoekstra said to Nieuwsuur. "She didn't let me know personally", Hoekstra said to the program.
The 75th anniversary of D-Day, the allied invasion that helped liberate Europe from the Nazi occupation in 1944, is being commemorated in Britain and France this week. Prime Minister Mark Rutte attended the commemoration in the English Portsmouth on Wednesday. And Minster Ank Bijleveld of Defense attended commemorations in Normandy and Arromanches on Thursday.
The Netherlands remembered the victims of the Second World War with commemorations across the country on Saturday. King Willem-Alexander, Queen Maxima and Prime Minister Mark Rutte attended the National Commemoration in Amsterdam on Saturday evening. Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema stressed that the the lack of freedom during the war must be passed on so that it can be remembered "as if the war were yesterday. Even if no one remembers what it is like to live in an occupied country", Het Parool reports.
Over 20 thousand people are expected to attend the National Commemoration of Remembrance Day in Amsterdam on Saturday evening. Attendees include King Willem-Alexander, Queen Maxima and Prime Minister Mark Rutte.
An important American flag from the Second World War will be displayed in the Kunsthal in Rotterdam for two weeks, starting Monday. The D-Day flag flew on landing ship LCC 60 on 6 June 1944, the only landing ship that managed to reach Utah Beach during the Allied invasion of Normandy. According to experts, this is one of the most important objects of the invasion that is still in private hands, RTL Nieuws reports.
The Dutch government has information that Russia developed a prohibited cruise missile, according to a letter written by Ministers Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs and Ank Bijleveld of Defense. It involves a SSC-8 missile that has a range of over 500 kilometers, which violates the INF treaty, NOS reports.
The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty was signed in 1987 between the United States and Russia. It put an end to the Cold War. The treaty forbids the development of missiles with a range of more than 500 kilometers.
The Ministry of Defense is stepping up the fight against cyber attacks. In addition to investing more in fighting off cyber attacks, the Ministry also wants to deal with perpetrators more publicly as recently happened after a thwarted espionage attempt by the Russians on the OPCW in The Hague, ANP reports.
A broadly shared wish of Dutch parliamentarians to recover dozens of World War II aircraft wrecks with missing crew members, is one step closer. The government is launching an "national program" to recover these wrecks, Ministers Kasja Ollongren of Home Affairs and Ank Bijleveld of Defense said in a letter to parliament, NOS reports.
The Netherlands is the midst of a "cyber war" with Russia, Defense Minister Ank Bijleveld said on television program WNL op Zondag. According to the Minister, a foiled cyber attack by the Russian secret service on chemical weapons watchdog OPCW shows that the nature of war has changed.
Sergei Lavrov, the Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs, said on Monday that the four Russian spies caught in The Hague in April was in the Netherlands for a routine trip. Russia denies that the secret service agents wanted to hack into chemical weapon watchdog OPCW, NU.nl reports.
Four Russian spies wanted to hack into the network of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPWC) on April 13th. Instead of being arrested and entering the Dutch system, they were deported to Moscow that same day. That decision was made by Onno Eichelsheim, director of military intelligence service MIVD. He wanted them out of the Netherlands as soon as possible, RTL Nieuws reports.
Dutch military intelligence service MIVD prevented a hacking operation by Russian secret service G.U. aimed at the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPWC), Minister Ank Bijleveld of Defense announced at a press conference in The Hague on Thursday. The G.U. tried to hack the OPWC on April 13th. Four involved Russian officers were deported from the Netherlands that same day, NOS reports.
The Public Prosecutor is dropping an investigation into decorated soldier Marco Kroon, who said that he killed a man who abducted him while on a mission in Afghanistan. The investigation has yet to provide a definitive answer, but there are insufficient leads to confirm whether or not what Kroon reported actually happened, the Public Prosecutor said on Thursday, NOS reports.
On Thursday King Willem-Alexander took a ride on a hybrid quad bike at military test site Fieldlab Smarbase in Soesterberg. The motorized four-wheeler runs on fuel and electricity, AD reports.
The King visited the test site with Minister Ank Bijleveld of Defense. The King and Minister watched demonstrations of innovative products and designs, including the hybrid quad and several robots.
The prosecution of those responsible for the MH17 disaster is the first subject Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs will discuss with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov during his visit to Moscow on Friday. The Dutch Minister will also ask Russia to contribute to stopping the conflict in Syria, first of all by making a cease fire possible so that humanitarian aid can get to the people in the war-torn country, NOS reports.
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.
Minister Ank Bijleveld of Defense understands why the United States is threatening military action in Syria following what is believed to be a poison gas attack in Douma. "If diplomatic, economical and political measures are insufficient, the Netherlands understands a proportional military action in Syria", she said to Nieuwsuur.
Dutch soldiers are again allowed to wear their uniforms in public. Minister Ank Bijleveld of Defense lifted the ban that was implemented in 2014 due to an increased threat of attacks on soldiers by jihadists, according to a Defense memorandum that will be published on Monday, ANP reports.
"The army has the task of protecting our kingdom and its allies. So it is also important that you are recognizable and approachable", the Minister said. According to her, the ban is being lifted at the express wish of Dutch soldiers.
The Dutch intelligence services placed 3,553 taps to eavesdrop on people and organizations last year, Ministers Kasja Ollongren of Home Affairs and Ank Bijleveld of Defense reported to parliament on Wednesday. This is the first time that the services' tap statistics are made public, NU.nl reports.
D66 parliamentarian Salima Belhaj thinks that the Dutch military must be made more sustainable, for example by using hybrid trucks instead of diesel or letting soldiers on mission grow part of their food there. She is submitting a set of proposals on how to achieve this to Minister Ank Bijleveld of Defense on Tuesday, she said in an interview with newspaper Trouw.
The two Dutch Ministers in charge of intelligence services AIVD and MIVD refused to respond to reports that the two services passed crucial information about Russian hackers influencing the United States presidential elections to the FBI. Other than saying that the government is proud of the Dutch security services, NOS reports.
The Ministry of Defense's policy is insufficiently focused on safety on all fronts, and there is therefore no guarantee that military tasks can be executed safely, the Van der Veer Committee concluded in its investigation into an accidental grenade explosion that killed two Dutch soldiers during training in Mali. "Improving safety is not rocket science", the committee said adding that this needs urgent attention, NOS reports.