Dutch ministers visit Afghanistan

20th March 2007, Comments 0 comments

20 March 2007, AMSTERDAM – Three Dutch ministers held talks in Kabul with their Afghan counterparts this week. It was the first time that this many Dutch ministers have been in Afghanistan at the same time. It was also the first time that Maxime Verhagen (Foreign Affairs) visited the country. Eimert van Middelkoop (Defence) and Bert Koenders (Development Cooperation) have visited Afghanistan in the past.

20 March 2007

AMSTERDAM – Three Dutch ministers held talks in Kabul with their Afghan counterparts this week. It was the first time that this many Dutch ministers have been in Afghanistan at the same time.
 
It was also the first time that Maxime Verhagen (Foreign Affairs) visited the country. Eimert van Middelkoop (Defence) and Bert Koenders (Development Cooperation) have visited Afghanistan in the past.

The ministers said they were in Kabul to make it clear to the Afghans that the new Dutch government wants to stay involved in the integrated approach to security, development and democratisation of the country. They also asked the Afghan government to remain committed to this approach.

No promises were made about a possible extension of the Dutch mission to Uruzgan, which is set to end in August 2008.

Verhagen said that no decision had yet been made "if and how" the Netherlands might remain involved in the NATO operation in Afghanistan after 2008.

Dick Berlijn, commander of the armed forces, has said that the Netherlands simply does not have to capacity to stay in Afghanistan longer than planned. Development cooperation will continue until 2010 however, and plans are already being made for the period following that.

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2007]

Subject: Dutch news

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