NATO to boost troops in Afghanistan
PR dla Zagranicy
NATO has decided to boost its presence in Afghanistan with an aim to train and advise Afghan soldiers.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. Photo: EPA/Julien Warnand.
After NATO’s summit in Brussels on Thursday, Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said allied troops in Afghanistan would not enter into combat.
“We have received a request from our military authorities to increase our military presence in Afghanistan with a few thousand troops,” Stoltenberg said, adding NATO would determine “the scale and the scope of the mission within weeks”.
American commanders in Afghanistan have for months asked for thousands more soldiers to support the Afghan government in its fight against the Taliban.
Also speaking after the Thursday summit, US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said America and its NATO allies were too quick to partly pull out of Afghanistan.
“Looking back on it, it’s pretty much a consensus that we may have pulled our troops out too rapidly, reduced the numbers a little too rapidly,” Mattis said.
NATO ceased armed combat in Afghanistan in 2014, implementing instead operation “Resolute Support” to train, assist and advise Afghan troops.
Under Resolute Support, a number of Polish commandos who recently returned to Poland were involved in recovering some 11 hostages being held and tortured by Taliban forces in the southwestern Helmand province.
Some 130,000 soldiers served in Afghanistan during the 2012 peak of NATO’s International Security Assistance Force mission, which preceded Resolute Support.
Now there are some 13,500 NATO soldiers serving in Afghanistan. (vb/pk)