Netherlands to Send F-16 Jets for Bombing ISIS Terrorists in Syria

Netherlands to Send F-16 Jets for Bombing ISIS Terrorists in Syria
Sat Jan 30, 2016 16:02:20

Netherlands has announced plans to send six F-16 fighter jets bombing ISIS targets in Syria as part of the US-led coalition.

The aircraft will now be active over Syria until July 1, targeting ISIS insurgent operations and training camps, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said.

ISIS's bombing and shooting attacks on Paris that killed 130 people in November had already led France and Britain to step up their bombing campaigns in Syria and Iraq.

'We have decided to heed the call of our allies for expansion of the operational area of our F-16s to the east of Syria to further weaken ISIS's supply lines and ability to advance,' Rutte said.

'Only by taking away ISIS's safe havens in Iraq and Syria can we prevent more attacks.'

The Netherlands is also considering providing more military equipment and training to Iraqi soldiers battling the militants.

Defense Minister Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert said the decision means the coalition will 'make more progress' against ISIS.

Extending the military operation became possible when the Dutch Labour Party, junior partner in the coalition government, said this week it was open to the idea, creating a parliamentary majority for it.

Foreign military interventions are especially sensitive in the Netherlands, which led a disastrous UN peacekeeping mission in Bosnia in 1995 during which 8,000 Muslim men and boys were massacred by Serb forces.

A previous Dutch government collapsed in 2010 in a controversy over participation in military operations against the Taliban in Afghanistan, where 2,000 troops were active, DailyMail reported.


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