Albania is going to send an extra company of troops to Afghanistan to join the international peacekeeping forces on the ground, the country's prime minister said on Friday.
"The last meeting of the NATO countries' foreign ministers considered it indispensable to add more forces to Afghanistan, therefore we decide to send a supplementary company of our troops there," Sali Berisha told his cabinet.
He said the Albanian troops will join the International Security Assistance Forces, under the command of Italian forces serving there.
For years, Albania has longed to join the NATO, hoping to get the signal to join the club by 2008. Berisha has said earlier that Albania is determined "to undertake any reforms and pay whatever price" to the join the NATO.
US President George W. Bush has signed into law the US Senate legislation to endorse the enlargement of the NATO to include Albania, along with Croatia, Macedonia Ukraine and George, into the group.
Albania has at present 22 peacekeeping troops in Afghanistan, serving under Turkish command. It has also sent 70 troops to Bosnia and 120 troops to Iraq.