NATO to give Afghan forces $10b equipment till 2014
KABUL (PAN): NATO will donate weapons, vehicles and airplanes worth more than $10 billion (458.1 billion afghanis) to Afghan security forces till 2014, an official of the Western military alliance announced on Wednesday.
Weapons and equipment would be provided to 305,000 Afghan security forces, a spokesman for the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), Josef Blotz, told a press conference in Kabul.
He said 70,000 automobiles, including armoured and technical vehicle, would be purchased for Afghan security forces. The army would receive 145 aircraft, including helicopters, till 2014, he added.
According to Blotz, Afghan forces will receive 45,000 weapons of 31 types, 175,000 walkie-talkies, technical equipment and state-of-the-art night-vision vehicles.
NATO was working in close coordination with the Karzai government and the foreign experts were permanently observing mid- and long-term needs of Afghan forces, the spokesman said.
"We are making efforts to see an independent, stabile Afghanistan. Our commitments to Afghanistan will remain till 2014," Blotz explained, saying they were confident Afghan forces would be able to take over the security responsibility on schedule.
The number of army recruits had been 800 soldiers a month in 2009, he recalled. The number has now gone up to 6,000 soldiers a month, enabling NATO to achieve its goal of training 305,000 security forces till October 2011.
Currently, the strength of the Afghan army is 164,000 and police 120,000.
Download “Pajhwok” mobile App, on your smartphone to read and access latest news, features, interviews, videos and photos about Afghanistan.