Foreign Minister Steinmeier issued the following statement today (10 July) to the German Press Agency (dpa):
We have now received formal notification from the Netherlands that it will be withdrawing some of its helicopters.
German support in Mali, including our role in the United Nations peace mission, has been provided on the basis of firm agreement within the German Government from the start.
We also now agree that Germany is not obliged to replace the helicopters previously supplied by the Netherlands and is certainly not the first port of call. It is the task of the United Nations to convince other member states to make a significant contribution to this important mission.