Jens Stoltenberg, Secretary General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) said Friday that NATO’s mission in Afghanistan has great importance and that the alliance is committed to long term military cooperation to Afghanistan.
He said NATO forces in Afghanistan will continue to advise, train and assist the Afghan security forces.
“I expect heads of states and government to make important decisions on Afghanistan. First to continue our military presence not with combat forces, but with a train, assist and advise mission, so we will continue to train, assist and advise the Afghan national army and security forces. Second I expect them to make decisions on continued funding of the national Afghan forces, and thirdly I expect the heads of states and governments also to reconfirm our long term political partnership and cooperation with Afghanistan,” said NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg.
Meanwhile U.S President Barack Obama has also reassured the Afghan people of continued international cooperation.
In addition, Poland which is a NATO member state, has extended the mission of Polish troops in Afghanistan. Poland keeps 200 soldiers in the country within the structure of NATO forces.
During the two day summit, leaders from NATO countries will hold discussions on a number of international issues such as tension between NATO and Russia, war against Daesh and Afghanistan.
The statement comes few days after Obama extended the presence of U.S troops in Afghanistan through the end of the year.
“As the global coalition pushes the ISIL (Daesh) back, on the ground in Syria and Iraq, the U.S pledged critical financial assistance to help shore up the Iraqi economy and stabilize liberated communities, and as NATO nation affirmed commitment to Afghanistan security. I want to commend once again the EU for taking the lead in mobilizing international assistance for development,” said Obama.
Afghan political commentators have said that continued support by NATO to Afghan security forces was critical as Afghan leaders try to hold fresh discussions with a number of world leaders on the sidelines of NATO summit in order to seek their support to Afghanistan.
“Afghan government has made a number of commitments to international community. The government must take steps and reform the leadership of the war. Government must mobilize the Afghan forces better in the battlefield so that they can fight effectively and improve security,” said political commentator Kako Jan Niazi.
The leaders of the 28 NATO allies and many partner nations will take decisions to strengthen the alliance’s security by bolstering its own deterrence and defense. It also intends to project stability beyond the borders of member states.
The NATO leaders meet at a time that the security situation in Afghanistan has dramatically deteriorated in recent months with the insurgent Taliban still attempting to gain ground in strategic locations across the country. Hundreds of civilians and members of the Afghan security forces have been killed during the Taliban attacks.