ISAF commander cites achievements
“No doubt there is still a huge amount of challenges out there in Afghanistan in the field of security, as well as in governance and development, but we are on a good way towards irreversible achievements for Afghanistan,” said the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) Deputy Chief of Staff for Stability, German Army Maj. Gen. Richard Rossmanith.
In a televideo conference with Pentagon correspondents, Rossmanith said ISAF had achieved undisputable progress over the last 12 to 18 months. “Stability efforts have contributed to these achievements. We have to continue our efforts rigorously, keep momentum, and work closely together with our Afghan partners and the international community to maintain and further expand our achievements,” he said.
Rossmanith said that the insurgency remains a risk and a threat to Afghanistan’s further development, and that international forces were directing their efforts toward neutralizing the insurgency.
“We have achieved quite something over the last year, and indeed, also in the area of Kandahar, in the southwest, in Helmand, we nowadays, together with our Afghan partners, control areas where we hadn't access had for quite a while and which were under strict insurgent and Taliban control,” he said.
“Nevertheless, there are still areas we have to go into, we have to clear. These gains we made over the last months are still fragile. The situation is not yet irreversible,” the German commander said.
“We have to do everything to maintain our momentum, to keep the initiative and to press forward with all means available in our comprehensive civil-military COIN strategy to actually overcome this situation,” he said.
The German commander said the Afghan government is still quite fragile and weak, and efforts must be directed toward making it stable and sustainable.
“The situation in Afghanistan is solved when the Afghan government… when the Afghans themselves are able to secure their country and to govern their country. These are the challenges which we are facing, and that is what we are dealing with in our campaign,” he said.
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