vrijdag 20 juli 2012

Defence Ministry Wants Closer Ties with German Army

The Dutch defence ministry wants to expand and deepen the ties with the German armed forces.

Commander of the Armed Forces General Tom Middendorp spoke this week with his German counterpart Wieker. "International partnership is of vital importance for the success of Defence. It is not a matter of choice, but pure necessity. The Netherlands cannot do everything alone", said Middendorp, who recently succeeded General Peter van Uhm as Chief of Defence.

There is already close collaboration in the military area between the Netherlands and Germany. The two countries work together in the First German-Dutch Army Corps. According to Middendorp, more partnership in ground-air defence, and in the purchase and operation of unmanned planes are among moves being considered.

According to NRC Handelsblad, a Dutch tank is being used in Saudi Arabia to promote a weapons deal between Germany and the Arabs. The Leopard 2A6 fighter tank has been upgraded by the original manufacturer, Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW), to a 2A7+ and exported to Saudi Arabia for a shooting test in the desert.

The newspaper termed the loan of the tank remarkable as the Netherlands has not given any permits for weapons trade with Saudi Arabia since last year. The Germans hope to be able to sell tanks to the oil state for billions.

(NISNews, 20 July 2012)

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