The Netherlands currently has 1181 personnel on missions abroad (status on 22 may 2013). The actual number of soldiers may differ due to rotation and leave.
The Defence organisation is currently involved in the following missions:
The International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) supports the Afghan government in maintaining security. In addition, the military personnel are involved in various ways in the reconstruction of the country.
Various ships of the Royal Netherlands Navy are being deployed for anti-piracy missions off the coast of East Africa until December 2012. The missions are Operation Atalanta (European Union) and Operation Ocean Shield (NATO). The naval ships are to increase security on the shipping routes near Somalia and discourage and disrupt acts of piracy.
The UN mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) directs its efforts towards state-building, economic development, human rights, protecting the civilian population and strengthening the security sector. This is done with the aim of enabling the government to function effectively and democratically so that this young state does not revert to instability. The Dutch contribution to this mission comprises around 30 personnel.
The Netherlands is soon to station 2 Patriot air defence systems in Turkey. This is being done to protect the territory and population against possible missile attacks from Syria. The Patriots will have a purely defensive task and will not support an offensive operation or enforcement of a no-fly zone.