Published On: Wed, Feb 25th, 2015

Dutch Minister of Defense continues cooperation with Venezuela

JeanineTHE HAGUE, WILLEMSTAD - The cooperation between the Netherlands and Venezuela in the fight against drug trafficking in the Caribbean continues unabated. Defense Minister Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert indicated this in a letter to the Dutch Parliament.

The claimed expansion of the Venezuelan defense area is not on the agenda. The parliament asked questions to the Minister of Defense, because of all the statements made by President Nicolás Maduro on this topic.

The reason for the question about the cooperation with Venezuela was the Annual Plan for 2015 of the Coast Guard. The Parliamentary Committee for Defense asked why there are no agreements on cooperation in combating drug trafficking, smuggling and arms trafficking.

Hennis-Plasschaert replied that Venezuela is still not a party to the International Convention of San Jose from 2003 on combating drugs, although the Netherlands has encouraged the Venezuelan authorities to do so. But there is indeed a cooperation, said the minister.

In 1988, Venezuela and the Netherlands signed an agreement to combat the production and trafficking of drugs.

“The treaty is formally still in force and based on it there are periodic bilateral discussions and agreements made,” she writes.

In addition, both the Netherlands and Venezuela are party to the UN Conventions on the approach to international organized crime and drug trafficking and the Netherlands is involved in regional initiatives in this area.

“The Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Caracas has a defense attaché and a police liaison to carry forward all of the above cooperation. This leads to mutual exchange of information,” said the minister. Smuggling and arms trafficking is not known to be tackled by Venezuela in a structured manner, the minister said.

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