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NATO Promise Long-Term Security Support to Afghanistan

Thursday 12 July 2018

BRUSSELS (NATO newsroom) — NATO has reaffirmed commitment for long-term security and stability in Afghanistan and termed the role of regional actors important in support to peace and stabilisation in Afghanistan, a media release from alliance said on Thursday.

Family Portrait at the Cinquantenaire in Brussels
(Photo: NATO)

Heads of states and collation partners from 43 countries, including US President Donald Trump, United Kingdom Prime Minister Theresa May and German Chancellor Angela Markel, participate in the annual summit. The second day of the summit NATO members will discuss situation in Afghanistan with their Afghan partners. A special session on Afghanistan will discuss continued financial and military support to Afghan security forces, peace process and decision on the continuation of NATO Resolute Support (RS) mission.

NATO pledged to continue assistance by extending financial sustainment of the Afghan forces through 2024 and by pledging to fill staffing shortfalls, especially in priority areas. A statement released by the alliance, after a July 11 meeting of heads of state, pledged continued support for the mission, known as Resolute Support:

We reaffirm our commitment to ensure long-term security and stability in Afghanistan.

[…]

As the Afghan government continues to work towards peace and reconciliation, we will continue our assistance by extending our financial sustainment of the Afghan forces through 2024 and by pledging to fill staffing shortfalls, especially in priority areas.

[…]

Regional actors have an important role to play in support of peace and stabilisation in Afghanistan, and we call on them to cooperate more closely on fighting terrorism, to improve the conditions for economic development, to support the Afghan government’s peace and reconciliation efforts, and to prevent any form of support to the insurgency.

The alliance called on Pakistan, Iran, and Russia to contribute to regional stability by fully supporting an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process.

Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani will be present for the second day of talks, and NATO’s Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg hopes the bloc will agree to fund Afghan security forces until 2024. Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May has already confirmed that the UK will send 440 more troops to serve in non-combat roles in Afghanistan. The US also committed an extra 3,000 troops to support Afghan forces in September 2017 - bringing its total to 15,000.

US officials have said Washington is planning a strategic review, a year after Mr Trump agreed to remain involved in the 17-year conflict.

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