Dutch agree to deploy Patriot missiles on Turkish-Syrian border
Friday 07 December 2012
The Dutch cabinet on Friday agreed to send two Patriot air defence system teams to Turkey to help protect against possible attacks from Syria, the NRC reported.
It will take several weeks before the deployment has been completed, according to media reports. The decision had been widely expected and several hundred Dutch soldiers will be part of the mission.
This is the third time Dutch Patriot missiles have been deployed in Turkey. It happened earlier in 1991 and 2003 as a defence against possible attacks by Sadam Hussein’s Iraq.
Germany has also agreed to send its Patriots to Turkey. Only the Netherlands, Germany and the US have the latest version of the defence system.
Foreign affairs minister Frans Timmermans described the cabinet’s decision to approve deployment as ‘very important’. ‘It is extremely volatile in Syria,’ the minister said.