A look at the Defence news 22 – 28 January

Dutch Force Protection in Iraq at full strength
A 145-strong unit of the air mobile brigade will protect military and civilian advisers in and around Baghdad over the coming period. With the arrival of these last soldiers, this force protection company is now at full strength.

Rutte visits marines in Bosnia-Herzegovina

Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte paid a visit to the Dutch marines in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The meeting was part of a 2-day trip, during which Rutte also visited Srebrenica and Croatia.

Netherlands to receive € 51 million in EU subsidies for military mobility

The Netherlands will receive € 51 million in EU subsidies in order to improve military transport by rail. Both ProRail and Verbrugge Zeeland Terminals saw their project proposals approved. The changes will increase overall rail capacity. The Connecting Europe Facility makes the subsidy available in order to facilitate the faster and easier movement of troops and materiel from member states and allies within Europe.

MQ-9 Reaper aircraft in Romania for NATO task

The first 2 MQ-9 aircraft have arrived in Romania. The final aircraft will follow shortly. The unmanned aircraft will soon be deployed to gather information on NATO’s eastern flank, that will be used to defend the alliance if required.

F-35 ready for the surveillance and protection of Benelux airspace for the first time

2 F-35s and 2 F-16s from the Netherlands are on standby in rotation for the surveillance and protection of the airspace of Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg. Belgium and the Netherlands carry out the so-called Quick Reaction Alert in turn. The Netherlands will take over the task until 9 May, and for the first time with the F-35 fighter aircraft.

HNLMS Karel Doorman back at sea after 7 months of maintenance

After 7 months of maintenance, HNLMS Karel Doorman is back at sea. The crew of the Joint Support Ship completed a 2-week individual exercise programme, which took place off the coast of Plymouth and in the Irish Sea. The ship also visited the port of Belfast.

Minister Ollongren visits troops around the Mediterranean

The Netherlands Minister of Defence, Kajsa Ollongren, visited Iraq, Israel, the Palestinian Authority and Egypt, where she spoke with the Netherlands Defence personnel present who are working for security and stability in the region. She also met with her counterparts in the different countries. In these talks, she underlined the importance of international cooperation to achieve de-escalation.

CHOD expresses continued support for Ukraine: "They are also waging our war"

During a visit to Ukraine, the Netherlands Chief of Defence, General Onno Eichelsheim, saw with his own eyes why it is important to continue to support the country. He also heard first-hand reports of the impact the war is currently having. His visit included a meeting with his Ukrainian counterpart, Chief of Defence Valerii Zaluzhnyi, the commander of the Ukrainian Air Force and many other Ukrainian military personnel.

HNLMS Van Amstel takes part in the first digital maritime NATO exercise

Crew members of HNLMS Van Amstel took part in Dynamic Mirage 2024, the first digital exercise for NATO naval vessels, which involved a computer simulation of a battle at sea. The navy played the computer game in the Maritime War Centre in Den Helder.

Dutch minehunter departed for NATO deployment

On 28 January, HNLMS Zierikzee took to the sea to join a minehunter squadron of the NATO fleet SNMCMG1. One of this fleet’s main tasks is to defuse any explosives in the sea.