Published On: Tue, Mar 20th, 2018

Dutch government: “Attention to defense ABC islands”

In the Foreign and Security Strategy, explicit attention is paid to security in the Caribbean parts of the Kingdom.

Dutch ParliamentTHE HAGUE - “The current crisis in Venezuela, the biggest neighbor of the Kingdom, can lead to unrest in the Caribbean parts of the Kingdom,” warns the Dutch government in the Integrated Foreign and Security Strategy (GBVS) published today.

The risks that the situation in Venezuela entails for Curaçao, Aruba and Bonaire are given prominent attention in the document that bears the title 'Worldwide for a safe Netherlands'. "The government pays particular attention to the defense of the Caribbean part of the Kingdom given the instability in that region,” according to the report.

“Of particular importance is the uncertain political and economic situation in Venezuela. The worsening humanitarian and economic situation - with potential risk of significant migration flows - has direct consequences for the Caribbean part of the Kingdom. The crisis in Venezuela can make the country even more attractive for criminal and other subversive networks.”

The government sees a serious threat to regional stability in the Venezuelan crisis. “The Kingdom has an interest in stability in the region, with a stable Colombia in particular being important. The Netherlands actively supports the peace process there. The US is a crucial ally to prevent violent escalation. But countries such as Mexico, Colombia and Brazil are also important for safety in this region.”

The Dutch government is not only concerned about the safety of the ABC islands: “Developments in Venezuela not only cause increased migratory pressure on the Windward Caribbean islands, but can also have important repercussions on the economy.” The Cabinet realizes in a positive way, according to the following comment: “The Netherlands is doing well. The economy is growing and our prosperity is increasing after years of crisis. It should be noted that the situation in the Caribbean parts of the Kingdom is less rosy.”

Kingdom Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs has presented the report to the Lower Chamber of the Dutch Parliament today. The threat posed by the crisis in Venezuela will undoubtedly be an important subject of discussion during the working visit that the minister brings to Curaçao and Aruba in early April.

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