Defence Ministry plans to scrap jobs, not JSF

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Thousands of Defence Ministry staff are facing forced redundancies, according to government sources quoted by newspaper. 

The measures will reportedly affect both military service staff and civil servants at all ranks, including the higher echelons. They’re part of an unprecented one-billion-dollar cost-cutting operation, planned by Defence Minister Hans Hillen.    Equipment will be scrapped too. Tanks will be disposed of, as will the Cougar-helicopters that were deployed in recent years as part of the Dutch contribution to the NATO-led mission in Afghanistan. A substantial number of F-16 fighter aircraft and naval vessels will be sold off.   However, the controversial purchase of a second Joint Strike Fighter plane, to the tune of 100 million euros, is likely to go ahead as planned. The US-built planes are to replace the Netherlands’ aging fleet of F-16s. Not buying the second plane would have repercussions for the Dutch involvement in the development and production of the planes.  

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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