On August 20, the governments of the Netherlands and Denmark issued a joint statement to announce the intention to deliver F-16s fighter aircraft to Ukraine (Government of the Netherlands, 2023). Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen pledged to send 19 aircrafts in three instalments, while Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte did not specify any number (Sabbagh, 2023). Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, for his part, claimed they reached an agreement for 42 fighter jets (Sabbagh, 2023).
The U.S Department of State has approved a possible military sale to the Government of the Netherlands of ninety-six PATRIOT MIM-104E Guidance Enhanced Missile-Tactical (GEM-T) Ballistic Missiles and related equipment for an envisioned cost of $1.219 billion. The sale proposal scheme includes, in addition to the missiles, training and test equipment, spare and repair parts, technical assistance, logistic service and support equipment. The Department of State’s decision came after an intense week of dialogue with Netherlands, as the Dutch Defence Minister visited the Pentagon on 13 June, and with other allies, Washington hosted the Fourth Ukraine Defence Contact Group on 20 June.
Nearly a year after the fall of the previous cabinet, the new ministers for the Rutte IV Cabinet were sworn in on Monday the 10 January. The new Minister of Defence is Kajsa Ollongren from the progressive liberal party D66, and she will be supported by Secretary of State Christophe van der Maat from the VVD. The minister of defence, Ollongren, is responsible for general defence policy. This entails, among other things, the future composition and equipment of the armed forces and their deployment. International affairs, such as NATO and EU policy, will also fall under her responsibilities.
On 28 January 2021, the Dutch Ministry of Defence reported that 12 Infantry Battalion, based in Schaarsbergen, has received 40 new sets of combat clothing and equipment as part of an enhanced logistical operation called Soldier Transformation OnGoing (STRONG). This operation intends to facilitate the modernisation of the Dutch soldier’s equipment. 12 Infantry Battalion is the first unit to receive equipment as part of STRONG. The programme solves logistical issues of long procurement and distribution schedules by utilising a “mobile fitting room” where soldiers can fit new equipment and have it adjusted according to their needs.