CDA demands helicopter for anti-piracy missions

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The Christian democratic party CDA – one of the two coalition partners in the minority cabinet – wants guarantees that navy vessels on anti-piracy missions off the Somali coast will always be equipped with a helicopter.

CDA MP Raymond Knops wants Defence Minister Hans Hillen to include this point in his proposal for continued Dutch participation in anti-piracy operations in Somalian waters.

Minister Hillen has already said that the supply ship HNLMS Zuiderkruis – which has an on-board helicopter – will take part in the EU anti-piracy operation Atalanta from September until November.

The minister has indicated that a number of other vessels, which are to take part in Atalanta and in the NATO mission Ocean Shield, are to be equipped with helicopters as well.

Following a report in newspaper De Telegraaf, Mr Knops said the minister’s “intention was insufficient”, and demanded guarantees.

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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