US thanks Denmark for troop contributions

US Defence Secretary Robert Gates briefly visited Denmark last week and made a public statement thanking Denmark for standing as an ally of America, according to report by United Press.

Gates said, “This is an ally who, in my opinion, is really punching above its weight, and I want to visit and basically thank them for that.”

Gates had meetings with the Prime Minister, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, as well as with other important government officials whilst in Copenhagen. His programme also included meeting Danish veterans who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“The Danes have played an important and tough role in Afghanistan,” said Gates.

Currently Denmark has 630 troops in Afghanistan, many of whom are working together with British troops in the southern region.

In addition, there are 40 Danish personnel serving in Iraq, all of whom are in training centres rather than active combat positions. Gates said that the US still plans to withdraw its combat troops from the region, despite recent flare-ups of violence there.

Gates then headed to Romania for the NATO summit in Bucharest.