Dutch Air Force soldier joins ISIS, first such desertion

A  Dutch Air Force sergeant is believed to have traveled to Syria to join ISIS (Daesh) terrorist group, the Netherlands’ Defense Ministry said on Thursday, NLTimes reported.

The ministry has reason to believe that an actively serving soldier – a 26 year old sergeant at the Royal Air Force – has left for Syria to join the terrorist, the ministry said.

The Ministry has suspended the soldier and withdrawn his access to information, systems and locations, the Telegraaf reports. Defense is investigating “any harm or risks associated with the function of the soldier”. The Public Prosecutor also has the matter under investigation.

“It goes without saying that traveling abroad and joining ISIS is unacceptable, and also punishable”, Defense Minister Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert said on the matter. “Every case of radicalization is one too many. It is disappointing when it turns out that someone has joined the bad side while colleagues risk their lives for the freedom of others.”

According to the Ministry, this is the first time that an actively serving Dutch soldier has left to join the terrorist organization.