11 Jun 2013

Nuclear weapons stored in Netherlands

2:56 pm on 11 June 2013

Twenty-two US nuclear weapons are stored on Dutch territory, according to former Dutch Prime Minister Ruud Lubbers.

Mr Lubbers, who was prime minister from 1982-94, said they were stored underground in strong-rooms at the Volkel air base in Brabant.

He made the disclosure in a National Geographic documentary saying: "I would never have thought those silly things would still be there in 2013."

The BBC reports the presence of nuclear weapons on Dutch soil has long been rumoured.

''I think they are an absolutely pointless part of a tradition in military thinking," Mr Lubbers said.

The Telegraaf newspaper quoted experts as saying the weapons held at Volkel were B61 bombs that were developed in the United States in the 1960s.

Mr Lubbers is believed to be the most senior person to confirm their presence in Holland. He said in the documentary that he first heard about the existence of the bombs when he was working for the air force at Volkel in 1963.