Dutch take a break from hunting pirates

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The Netherlands has suspended its contribution to the EU and NATO anti-piracy missions until April.

The naval supply vessel HNLMS Zuiderkruis on Tuesday left Somali waters and headed for home. The supply vessel will be relieved by ships from other countries involved in the mission.

The frigate HNLMS Van Amstel will take part in the EU anti-piracy mission Atalanta from April, to be followed one month later by the frigate HNLMS Evertsen which is to make a contribution to the NATO mission Ocean Shield. A Dutch submarine will also be taking part in Ocean Shield.

The Netherlands will also supply a commander who is to take charge of all ships taking part in the NATO operation. And part of the mission’s international staff will consist of Dutch soldiers.

The Zuiderkruis is expected to enter its homeport of Den Helder on 15 December. The 36-year-old ship will be decommissioned as a result of cuts to the defence budget.


© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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