Germany has announced it will send a further 500 troops to Afghanistan, with a focus on protecting civilians and training local security forces.
Chancellor Angela Merkel said: “We are convinced that we cannot reconstruct without security, but on the other hand without reconstruction we cannot have security in Afghanistan. That’s why the federal government’s concept is planned in a certain way, with different cornerstones: civil reconstruction, training and military deployment.”
Merkel says she hopes Afghanistan will be able to assume control of its own security by 2014.
As well as the 500 extra troops, there’ll be a reserve force of 350. More police officers will also be sent to help with training.