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Amsterdam Mayor: Police need to improve cooperation in terrorism drills

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NLTimes

By Janene Pieters

The municipality of Amsterdam learned important lessons from a large anti-terrorism drill held in the Dutch capital in November. One lesson is that the cooperation between the police and Defense must be improved, interim Amsterdam mayor Jozias van Aartsen said in a letter to the city council on Tuesday, AT5 reports.

On November 8th and 9th a large-scale terrorism drill was held in Amsterdam. A scenario was simulated in which a group of armed men crashed into pedestrians with a truck. A large number of local and national emergency services participated in the drill, including the communal control room, units of special intervention service DSI, security units of Defense, crisis teams of the municipality and the police.

Although intense work was done on cooperation between the police and Defense in case of a terrorist attack, the drill showed that the services have trouble working well together, according to the mayor. The drill also revealed that working in an urban environment is a lot different than the areas in which Defense normally operates.

Another challenge was properly dividing aid and relevant information that arrived at the control room, and it took relatively long for the emergency services to escalate the situation to GRIP 1 - the coordinated regional incident prevention procedure. Getting aid to victims also took a relatively long time, because it was unclear to the control room and the police whether the situation was safe.

Read more: https://nltimes.nl/2018/04/11/defense-police-need-improve-cooperation-terrorism-drills-amsterdam-mayor-says

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