No timetable for withdrawing troops from Afghanistan: NATO spokesman

20:00, November 08, 2010      

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The spokesman of NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said on Monday that no timetable has been set for withdrawal of coalition troops from Afghanistan.

"There has been no timetable yet," Brigadier-General Josef Blotz told a weekly press conference.

Regarding handover of security control to Afghan forces, he said, "We will not carry out according to a fixed timetable, it will be carried out based on conditions to be achieved over the next couple of years."

However, he noted that the most important condition for transfer of security control to Afghan side depends on the progress to build Afghan National Security Force (ANSF).

"In the upcoming NATO summit due on November 19 and 20 in Lisbon, the head of governments and states would discuss Afghanistan and ISAF particularly the transition of security to ANSF," he said.

He made the comments in response to media reports that the top commander of NATO and U.S. force in Afghanistan General David Petraeus has drafted a timetable for handover of security control of Afghan provinces to local security forces.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai in an international conference on Afghanistan held in July this year in Kabul outlined a program in which Afghan forces will take security responsibility of all Afghan provinces by the end of 2014.

Source: Xinhua


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