Van Bommel: 'Government starting to move goalposts on Kunduz agreements'

29 August 2011

Van Bommel: 'Government starting to move goalposts on Kunduz agreements'

Harry van Bommel is demanding an immediate parliamentary debate with the Minister of Defence on the changing of the mandate in the Afghan province of Kunduz. Van Bommel’s move was prompted by an announcement regarding the new tasks to be assigned to the AUP, the Afghan police force trained and supervised by Dutch troops. According to police commandant Samiullah Qatra, in Kunduz battles may have to be fought if public order is to be restored. 'This will of course include offensive actions,’ says Van Bommel. ‘This is in conflict with the agreements reached with Parliament earlier in the year.'

Harry van BommelIn the SP’s judgement the agreements in question made a mockery of the harsh reality of Kunduz, having only been undertaken by Prime Minister Mark Rutte in order to win the support of a few parties and thus enable the mission in Kunduz to go ahead. “It was always obvious that Afghan police units would be deployed in the war,” insists Van Bommel. “But the government said that they could run things differently. The Dutch operation in Kunduz is still not even properly under way and things are already beginning to shift away from what was agreed. Directly after the recess I want to see a debate on this with the government.” In the meantime, the SP parliamentary group has tabled a number of official questions on the matter. “If agreements are not followed then this mission must be brought to an end,” Van Bommel concludes.

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