Shut Gitmo, Dutch minister tells US
12 January 2006
AMSTERDAM — Dutch Defence Minister Henk Kamp said Thursday the US should close its detention camp for terrorist suspects at Guantanamo Bay as soon as possible.
Kamp’s comments in a radio interview echoed a similar plea by German Chancellor Angela Merkel earlier in the week.
The Dutch minister said he did not agree with the American contention ‘terrorist’ combatants, as distinct from civilians and soldiers, fall outside the provisions of the Geneva Convention. “You have civilians and military personnel, and not something else in between,” Kamp said.
He said the “ideal situation” would be for the interment camp at Guantanamo Bay not to exist anymore. This must be “actualised as quickly as possible,” he said.
Kamp also repeated his assertion that the Netherlands would send 1,200 additional troops to the Afghanistan.
Junior coalition party D66 has threatened it might collapse the Dutch government if the controversial deployment to the south of Afghanistan goes ahead.
Kamp said he had little understanding for D66’s position. “Since 2002 we have decided on 15 occasions to send a new military mission to Afghanistan. The D66 was always in favour, therefore it is not a principled objector.”
[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2006]
Subject: Dutch news