Dutch troops in secret move in Afghanistan

Over a hundred Dutch soldiers were secretly moved from their base in the Afghani province of Uruzgan to assist Canadian troops in Kandahar last week, according to newspaper Trouw. The transfer of Dutch troops to other parts of south Afghanistan led to a fierce parliamentary debate last week.

The defence minister Henk Kamp told MPs that he supported the standpoint of the Dutch task force commander that Dutch troops could be employed outside Uruzgan as part of the Nato force for southern Afghanistan.
According to Trouw, the defense ministry already knew that Dutch soldiers would be moved to Kandahar. The Telegraaf website reported today that the Defence Ministry has confirmed the transfer of Dutch troops to allow the Canadian force to take part in an offensive against the Taliban. The Dutch troops are guarding a post on the route between the city of Kandahar and Tarin Kowt, the capital of Uruzgan.
Meanwhile, the body of 29-year-old Michael Donkervoort who died last week when his F-16 crashed in the province of Ghanhis, arrived back in the Netherlands on Sunday evening. The Defence Ministry believes the crash was an accident. Donkervoort is the third Dutch soldier to die in Afghanistan.

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