Units and locations

The following Defence units are present in the Caribbean:

  • a Marine Corps squadron on Aruba;
  • a Marine Corps detachment on St Maarten;
  • a Royal Netherlands Army company on Curaçao, on a rotational basis;
  • the Arumil (Aruban militias);
  • the Curmil (Curaçaoan militias);
  • a Fast Raiding Interception and Special Forces Craft (FRISC) troop (fast boats) on Curaçao and Aruba;
  • the RNLN guard ship in the West with on-board helicopter;
  • support vessel HNLMS Pelikaan;
  • a Royal Netherlands Marechaussee brigade.

If required, the Netherlands armed forces can expand their military presence in the Caribbean.

Locations

Parera Naval Base

The Parera Naval Base is centrally located on the island of Curaçao. This base houses the staff of the Flag Officer Caribbean. Parera also houses:

  • An army company; this company has a permanent presence in order to conduct exercises and training, and if required to lend military support and humanitarian aid, for example in the event of a hurricane or for maintaining public order. The company is also deployed for ceremonial tasks, such as the State Opening of Parliament.
  • The Curaçao Boat Group. This boat group is mainly deployed to support all sorts of operations and exercises. In addition, it can also perform beach reconnaissance and riverine operations.
  • The Curaçao Coastguard Support Point.
  • The Dutch Caribbean Coastguard Rescue and Coordination Centre. This centre directs all counter-drugs operations in the Caribbean.
  • The Maritime Headquarters in the Caribbean (MHKC).

Parera Naval Base has a number of workshops where all sailing and rolling stock is maintained.

Suffisant Naval Barracks

Military training is provided at the Suffisant Naval Barracks on Curaçao, as is the social training programme (sociaal vormingstraject/SVT). The barracks is also the base for military personnel participating in national and international exercises and training programmes. In addition, Suffisant is the host of the Curaçao Volunteer Corps. These volunteers are deployable for maintaining peace and order on the island.

Savaneta Marine Barracks

The Savaneta Marine Barracks is located on Aruba and houses the Aruba Coastguard Support Point, the Marine Squadron Carib and the Arumil. These comprise a staff, platoons and supporting units. The Marine Squadron Carib and the Arumil carry out a variety of tasks. To this end, they sometimes train and exercise in the United States and on the Leeward and Windward islands. An Arumil platoon is responsible for surveillance and security at the barracks.

Sint-Maarten

The Sint Maarten Marine detachment is the first designated unit to provide military support to Sint Maarten, Saba and Sint Eustatius. The detachment assists the local authorities on the 3 islands as well as the Dutch Caribbean Coastguard’s Sint Maarten Coastguard Support Point.