US Defence Secretary praises Dutch
US Defence Secretary Leon Panetta has praised the Netherlands for its contribution to the NATO’s new missile defence system. Dutch Defence Minister Hans Hillen, who is attending a two-day NATO summit in Brussels, says the Dutch were also praised for their efforts to make the armed forces more efficient.
The US praise is for an offer by the Dutch government to modernise the radar systems of four air defence frigates, so that they can become part of NATO’s defence shield.
The plans to develop a NATO defence system were cautiously adopted last year. The issue is sensitive as only 21 out of 27 members of the European Union are also NATO members and the system is meant to defend NATO members. The system could also pose a threat to the development of European defences. In September, Turkey announced an early-warning system will be located in the south east of the country.
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