NATO is ready to reinforce its ground troops in Afghanistan says the alliance's secretary-general, but will not send combat units.
NATO’s secretary general says the alliance is ready to send more troops to Afghanistan.
Jens Stoltenberg says the scale and scope of the mission should be decided at an EU summit in June, and that the forces will be non-combat units.
The alliance, and America’s longest-ever war grinds on, with the Afghan government in Kabul only in control of two-thirds of the country.
“This is not about returning back to a combat operation in Afghanistan. It will continue to be a train, assist and advise operation, because I strongly believe that the best answer we have to terrorism, the best weapon we have against terrorism, is to train local forces to fight terrorism,” he said.
But those local forces continue to be lacking as rampant corruption ensures many are “ghost” soldiers, their pay pocketed by officers who inflate their recruitment rolls.
NATO forces struggle to find reliable units they can trust to work with, and with terrain being lost to the Taliban the US has already decided to boost troop numbers again.