Stoltenberg hails ratification of security pacts
Last night, President Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai signed into law the Bilateral Security Agreement with the US and the Status of Forces Agreement with NATO. The pacts, providing for a continued foreign military presence, were approved by the parliament last week.
“I warmly welcome the vote, which paves the way for the launch of our new mission. Resolute Support is going to be launched on the first of January 2015,” Jens Stoltenberg said.
In opening remarks before a NATO ministerial conference in Brussels, he said the non-combat mission was aimed to train, advise and assist Afghan security forces.
Calling the new mission only one aspect of NATO support, he pledged the alliance would also provide funding for the Afghan forces and develop its long-term partnership with the country.
Ahead of meeting President Ghani and with Chief Executive Abdullah, he expected four concrete outcomes from the ministerial meeting, including an agreement on a continuous NATO presence in the eastern part of the alliance next year.
Stoltenberg also hoped for the announcement of an interim Spearhead Force to enhance NATO readiness, strong political support for Ukraine and the launch of a new mission in Afghanistan.
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