The Netherlands and Colombia announced September 28th they will work more closely together for security in the Caribbean region. This includes, for example, combating cross-border crime such as drug smuggling.
HNLMS Groningen visited the Colombian port city of Cartagena last week. The Dutch navy ship that sails as a station ship in the region, together with the Colombian ship ARC Victoria, carried out numerous exercises at sea. Among other things, they tested basic communication skills and maneuvering exercises. It was the first time in a long time that a Dutch and Colombian navy ship operated so intensively with each other.
The necessary contacts were made on board the Groningen in advance. This was done on the initiative of the new Commander of the Navy in the Caribbean, Commander Walter Hansen. Representatives of the Colombian Navy, local authorities and companies and representatives of the Dutch business community were present.
Colombia was already an important security partner of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in the Caribbean. Cross-border crime, including drug smuggling, is highly destabilizing and undermining Caribbean countries. Intensive cooperation between Colombia and the Kingdom of the Netherlands promotes international security and stability in the region. This falls under the main tasks of the Ministry of Defense.