Germany to Keep 800 Troops for Afghan Training Post-2014
The Germany has announced plans to keep up to 800 soldiers for a Nato training mission in Afghanistan after US and other foreign combat troops leave Afghanistan by the end of 2014.
The German Defence Minister Thomas de Maiziere on Thursday said Berlin was offering to station between roughly 600 and 800 soldiers in Kabul and the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif for a two-year period starting in 2015.
They would provide training, advice and support to local forces but not engage in combat missions. He said that, after that period ends, the plans call for training and advisory help by foreign soldiers to be concentrated on Kabul, and Germany would then be prepared to contribute 200-300 troops.
He said that Germany’s offer is dependent on a formal invitation from the Afghan government, because “we want to be welcome.” Germany also insists on a UN resolution, a troop status agreement with Afghanistan, and”appropriate contribution” to the mission by Germany’s allies. Germany has now about 4,170 troops in Afghanistan, most of them based in northern Afghanistan. Germany has lost 53 soldiers in the Afghan war, since it started its mission in the country. There are around 66,000 US troops in Afghanistan helping over 300,000 Afghan security forces in the fight against insurgency. (ToloNews)