Tue, Sep

NATO to discuss level of presence in Afghanistan


nato-summitNATO defence ministers, scheduled to meet in Brussels on Thursday, will discuss the level of the alliance presence and the Resolute Support mission in Afghanistan.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenbergtold reporters in the Belgian capital on Tuesday ministerial meeting would also confer on whether or not to reduce the number of military bases in the country.

“The duration of the whole mission, the level of forces, the number of forces and also the regional outreach of the mission. So all this is now something we are going to assess,” he said.

Asked about the Kunduz situation, he praised the Afghan security forces as capable of facing threats, standing their ground and taking responsibility for nationwide security after an end to NATO’s combat mission.

“But what we have seen in Kunduz and elsewhere, they face challenges as Taliban are launching attacks on the government forces. But they have been able to retake and stand their ground again and again…no one thought it would be an easy task for them (retaking Kunduz).”

However, he added in the long run,the Afghan forces should not be totally dependent on foreign combat troops and had have to take care of their own security

About the US air raid on the MSF hospital, he said: “When we have the facts on the table, then we can have a good foundation to draw conclusions…So the important thing now is to get the facts, to conduct a thorough and full investigation and then start to draw conclusions.”