Rabbani Meets NATO's Assistant Secretary-General for Operations


Foreign Minister, Salahuddin Rabbani met with NATO’s Assistant Secretary-General for Operations Patrick Turner on Wednesday afternoon in Kabul, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

According to the statement, Rabbani said the recent NATO Ministerial Meeting in Brussels had been very fruitful for Afghanistan and expressed his appreciation for NATO’s Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan till the end of 2016.

He also thanked NATO for its efforts to attract the international community’s support for the Afghan National Security and Defense Forces until 2020 and NATO’s planning for its non-military presence in Afghanistan after the end of the Support Mission.

NATO’s Assistant Secretary-General for Operations meanwhile said NATO’s participation with Afghanistan was stable and the Afghan National Security and Defense Forces had their continued support.

He said NATO would jointly work with Afghanistan so that the next NATO Summit in Warsaw brings significant outcomes for Afghanistan, according to the statement.

Earlier this month, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said at a press conference that after 2016 the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) mission will focus only on training and mentoring in Afghanistan and those bases will be located in only four provinces in the country.

NATO Secretary-General said on the sidelines of the meeting that Afghanistan is an important country for NATO, and it will not allow the country to become a safe haven for terrorists as Afghanistan’s insecurity was in turn a big threat to the security of NATO countries.

Stoltenberg said he supported the peace process by the Afghan government and asked neighboring countries to help with the process.

These comments come on the heels of earlier statements that NATO will keep 12,000 troops in Afghanistan until the end of 2016.

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