10 February 2005
BRUSSELS – Spain will bring Iraqi police to its territory for training and will also contribute to a Nato fund for other activities to create new security forces for the strife-torn country.
Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos also confirmed that his government will assume a larger role in the stabilisation of Afghanistan, taking control of an outpost and reconstruction team in one of the country’s western provinces.
That participation comes as part of Nato’s international security force, which works in Afghanistan under a UN mandate.
Moratinos provided no details on the number of Iraqi police to be trained in Spain or on the size of Madrid’s contribution to the Nato fund for Iraq.
“It is the first time we’re talking about this and we have to see what our budget capacity is,” he said, stressing that “Spain is not going to send soldiers to Iraq.”
Right after taking office last April, Spain’s Socialist government pulled Spanish troops out of Iraq.
The move caused tension between Madrid and Washington.
“In the past there were divergent positions around this table.
There were elements of rupture within the (Atlantic) Alliance and between the US and the European Union,” Moratinos said.
“Today, after the (30 January) elections in Iraq, we’re all looking with willingness and commitment to help the political process that has taken its first positive step,” he said.
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news