Dutch to deploy additional troops in Iraq

The Dutch army will deploy additional troops and three Chinook helicopters to Iraq, in addition to leading the NATO mission in Baghdad.
Dutch army earlier provided force protection for Erbil airport (Photo: Dutch Ministry of Defense)
Dutch army earlier provided force protection for Erbil airport (Photo: Dutch Ministry of Defense)

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The Dutch government on Friday announced that its military will deploy 120 additional soldiers to Baghdad to support the NATO Mission Iraq (NMI), and it will provide a commander to lead the NATO mission. 

The reinforcements would contribute to a new total of 281 Dutch troops in Iraq.

Earlier this year, the Dutch government said it would support the NMI with 145 more soldiers.

The NATO commander will be assisted by a staff of approximately 15 soldiers.

In addition, the Netherlands is sending 3 Chinook transport helicopters to Iraq that will be deployed in the Ain al-Asad Airbase.

There are also a total of 11 Dutch soldiers stationed in Erbil to advise and assist Kurdish Peshmerga forces. 

Read More: 125 Dutch soldiers to return home from Kurdistan

Since Jan. 2021, 120 Dutch troops were stationed in Erbil to provide protection to the Erbil International Airport, but they left in May 2023 and were replaced by Estonian soldiers.

In a letter to the Dutch parliament, the Dutch Ministers of Defense and Foreign Affairs also mentioned that the political tensions continue in Kurdistan between the ruling Kurdish parties, the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) and the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP). The letter also mentions the stoppage of independent oil exports and its negative impact on the region’s economy.