Spanish troops to remain in Afghanistan

25th September 2007, Comments 0 comments

25 September 2007 , MADRID – Spain remains committed to its U.N.-mandated role in Afghanistan and its troops will remain to help pacify and rebuild the country, Defence Minister José Antonio Alonso told parliament on Monday, a day after two Spanish soldiers were killed in an attack.

25 September 2007

MADRID – Spain remains committed to its U.N.-mandated role in Afghanistan and its troops will remain to help pacify and rebuild the country, Defence Minister José Antonio Alonso told parliament on Monday, a day after two Spanish soldiers were killed in an attack.

Alonso reaffirmed Spanish participation in the United Nations mission in an appearance to seek parliamentary approval to send an additional 52 Spanish military personnel to train the Afghan Army.

Spain, the minister said, is in Afghanistan to "bring security for reconstruction."

Alonso admitted that Afghanistan was a risky environment for foreign troops who are targeted by Taliban insurgents, drug traffickers and war lords.

The two Spanish troops were killed, and six others were injured, when their vehicle triggered a landmine while they were on patrol in western Afghanistan.

Since deploying in the Central Asian nation in 2002, 84 Spanish military personnel have died there, mostly in accidents. Only four have died in combat situations.

In urging approval for the new training mission, Alonso said it would be "another step" in helping the Afghan government assume more control over the country.

There are around 700 Spanish troops stationed in Afghanistan.

(Copyright EFE with Expatica)

Subject: Spanish news

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