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 social security at the Ministry of Defense is inadequate, concluded a committee that investigated the barracks in Schaarsbergen after soldiers who were stationed there reported being abused and sexually assaulted. Because of the closed culture at the Ministry, people are not easily inclined to report such abuses, the researchers said, NU.nl 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.
Defense made mistakes in acquiring winter clothing for soldiers who will participate in a NATO mission in Norway next month. As a result, the soldiers are forced to buy their own clothing for the mission in a terrain where temperatures can drop to -20 degrees. The Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, is furious, NU.nl 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.
The Ministry of Defense temporarily made it impossible to install sports- and fitness apps on Defense phones, Defense Minister Ank Bijleveld told parliament on Sunday after it was revealed that personal data can easily be obtained from the Polar fitness app, ANP reports.
"Private data of military personnel, civilian staff and in particular intelligence services are out on the streets, at home and abroad", Bijleveld said. "The ministry repeatedly reminded staff of the specific vulnerability of such apps."
Defense deployed two Chinook helicopters on Sunday to help the Twente fire department fight a large fire that broke out at the Twence dump in Hengelo on Saturday night. The helicopters flew over the dump time and again, pouring 10 thousand liters of water onto the fire each time, De Gelderlander reports.
The Dutch Safety Board is positive about the measures the Ministry of Defense is implementing following a fatal shooting accident in Ossendrecht and a fatal mortar grenade explosion in Mali. Defense is taking recommendations to improve the culture and safety seriously and is "raising the bar for itself", acco
Dutch police officers, soldiers, prosecutors and diplomats were spied on by Ukrainian and Russian secret services while they were in Ukraine after the MH17 disaster in 2014, RTL Nieuws reports based on well-informed sources.
The Ministry of Defense reached an agreement on compensation with the families of three killed soldiers, a soldier killed during shooting practice in Ossendrecht and two soldiers killed when a mortar grenade exploded during training in Mali, lawyer Michael Ruperti confirmed to ANP.
On Wednesday the police raided a home on Heistraat in Eindhoven after receiving a report that the resident was trying to sell explosives on Marktplaats. In the home officers found grenades, an aircraft bomb and a rocket. The resident was arrested, Omroep Brabant reports.
The police responded to the home with a Defense explosive ordnance disposal team.
In total 40 pieces of ammunition were found in the home. Six grenades were potentially dangerous, and were detonated as a precaution. The rest were empty explosives or training material.
On Monday State Secretary Barbara Visser of Defense apologized for the fact that Defense employees were insufficiently protected against the health consequences of working with carcinogenic chromium 6 in the period 1984 to 2006. "Defense has failed", she said while presenting the results of a major investigation by the RIVM. "I am sorry.", NOS repots.
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.
An ATM on Lieuwenburg in Leeuwarden was blown open around 4:30 a.m. on Friday morning. The ATM bombing caused a great deal of damage, the police said on Twitter.
The police closed down a wide area around the ATM and called in the fire brigade and the Ministry of Defense's explosive disposal team as a precaution, NU.nl reports. Several homes were evacuated. The municipality is arranging shelter for the residents.
The Dutch Armed Forces' repatriation and identification service is making a final attempt to identify 103 unknown Dutch victims of the Second World War. As the group of immediate surviving relatives is getting smaller and smaller, time is running out to put a name to these still anonymous victims, the Ministry of Defense said, NOS reports.
After a year long investigation, the Ministry of Defense found no evidence that decorated soldier Marco Kroon was kidnapped in Afghanistan in 2007 and afterwards killed his abductor. The Defense leaders therefore take into account that Kroon - at least partly - fabricated the story, the Volkskrant reports based on conversations with 13 people who were involved in the secret mission in Kabul, or have knowledge about the Defense investigation into this incident.
Three new witnesses came forward in the trial around the hijacking of a train at De Punt in 1977. The three new witnesses, former officers, say that soldiers who stormed the hijacked train were ordered not to take the Moluccan hijackers prisoner, but to shoot and kill them, the Volkskrant reports.
Ministry of Defense employees and people living around Defense ammunition sites were in unnecessary danger for years because the safety of ammunition depots was not in order, the Volkskrant reports based on internal documents from Defense and the Inspectorate of Social Affairs and Employment.
The newspaper got hold of these documents through the Freedom of Information Act.
The Secretary General of NATO, Jens Stoltenberg, criticized the Netherlands for still not increasing Defense spending to 2 percent of the gross domestic product. "We expect more. This is about what's fair", he said in a conversation with the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, on Thursday, NU.nl reports.
Two former employees of Dutch military intelligence service MIVD fear for their lives after decorated soldier Marco Kroon revealed details about a secret operation in Afghanistan to the media, they said to Nieuwsuur.
The two former intelligence workers, who are of Afghan origin but have been living in the Netherlands for years, asked to remain anonymous, according to Nieuwsuur. They are preparing a lawsuit against the Ministry of Defense, with which they hope to force the Ministry to help them build a new life elsewhere in Europe.
No Dutch soldiers will be prosecuted for bombings by the anti-ISIS coalition in Iraq and East Syria in which civilians were killed, the Public Prosecutor decided. The Dutch soldiers did not break the law of war, the the Ministers of Defense and Foreign Affairs wrote in a letter to parliament, RTL Nieuws reports.
The Public Prosecutor investigated four incidents. In none of these incidents did the Dutch soldiers break the law of war, the Ministers wrote.