Germany to send extra army trainers to Afghanistan

May 1st, 2008 - 1:08 pm ICT by admin  

Berlin, May 1 (DPA) Germany has said it will send extra army instructors to Afghanistan, including 15 personnel, to join an existing 30-men military-police training unit in the Asian nation. Defence ministry spokesman Thomas Raabe Wednesday said in Berlin that a training mission for the Afghan Army would be doubled in size to 220 men.

To date, Germany has provided four “operational mentoring and liaison teams” to assist Kabul’s efforts to expand the Afghan Army to 80,000 men. In future there will be seven teams of German military instructors.

The Afghan police force has been widely criticised for a lack of professionalism. Plans to expand it to 70,000 men have lagged, with some of the blame cast by commentators on Germany, which is the main contributor to a European Union (EU) training scheme for the police.

The EU mission currently comprises 195 police, 60 of them Germans. Berlin has voiced willingness to double the number of Germans seconded from its state and federal police forces.

As an additional solution, German military police have also been moved over to training regular Afghan police. Raabe said German military policemen had so far conducted courses for 2,100 Afghan police in how to keep themselves safe and operate road blocks.

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