Monday, December 06, 2004

Dutch soldiers rather walk

IraqDutch soldiers in Ar Rumaythah (Iraq) are going to do patrol the streets by walking instead of driving. Ar Rumaythah is the most dangerous place in the province Al Muthanna that the Dutch control but they say walking improves their relations with the Iraqi people. The Dutch army sees it self not as occupiers but as supporters of the local Iraqi authorities. Earlier this year Dutch government worked together with the local Iraqi authorities to prosecute a Dutch soldier who was suspected of shooting not according to the (secret) violence protocol of the mission. But on August 14, Dutch soldier Jeroen Severs died and 5 others where injured during an ambush in Ar Rumaythah. As there are rumors that the Dutch suspect involvement of the Iraqi governor or other local officials this seems to be an important reason not to extend the Iraqi mission next year.

Sources: nldetirak.nl, Telegraaf