The Dutch cabinet will discuss a U.S. request to join coalition air strikes against jihadists in Syria within “the coming days”, Foreign Minister Bert Koenders said, amid speculation a decision may come as early as Friday.
“The cabinet will now decide. We’ll discuss it in the coming days,” Koenders told Dutch news programme Nieuwsuur late Tuesday night.
Late last year the Dutch government received a request from its allies the United States and France to broaden its campaign of air support against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group from Iraq into Syria.
After weeks of dallying, the junior partner in the ruling coalition, the Labour Party (PvdA), Tuesday finally agreed to back an extension of air strikes into Syria, apparently ensuring there is now a parliamentary majority in favor of such a move.
Koenders, who is from the major coalition partner the People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD), stressed however that despite the bombings a political solution was essential to end the country’s brutal five-year war that has left more than 260,000 dead and forced millions from their homes.