Polish troops end Afghanistan mission
PR dla Zagranicy
The war in Afghanistan has formally ended, with a ceremony concluding the 13-year-long NATO combat mission, also with the participation of Polish troops.
The Polish Army will be among other NATO members to leave Afghanistan. Photo: cc/Wikimedia Commons
News of the special event held on Sunday had been made public at the last moment. It was feared that the ceremony could become the target of an attack by the Taliban which stepped up activity lately with a series of bombings and shootings in the country's capital Kabul.
The only information disclosed in advance had been that the event would be led by ISAF commander, US General John Campbell.
As of January 1st, the NATO military mission will be replaced by soldiers entrusted with advisory and training tasks. Instead of front line action, some 12,500 Alliance soldiers will be supporting Afghan army and police units in their assignments related to countering Taliban forces.
The year 2011 had been a record one with regard to the number of ISAF troops participating in the Afghan mission. Their total amounted to 130,000 coming from 50 countries.
The Polish contingent numbered 2,500 at that time. The death toll claimed the lives of 44 Polish servicemen during the entire mission.
The most tragic incident involving Polish troops took place in Ghazni province in 2011 when five soldiers on patrol in an armored vehicle were killed in a roadside ambush by Taliban rebels. (ss)