Afghan army chief pins hope on new security plan
KABUL (Pajhwok): Calling as propaganda the start of Taliban’s spring offensive, Chief of Army Staff Gen. Qadam Shah Shaheem on Wednesday said a five-year security plan had been devised for the military and would be presented at the upcoming NATO summit in Warsaw, Poland.
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) summit slated for July 8-9 is expected to decide on assistance measures for conflict-torn Afghanistan till 2020.
Last month, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, who arrived in Kabul, said the summit would be an opportunity to review joint efforts, and to deepen the relationship between NATO and Afghanistan even more.
He added that the military alliance would continue to provide financial support to the Afghan forces and noted that the alliance intended to announce future support plans for Afghanistan during the summit.
The summit will follow another meeting of the alliance in early October in Brussels, where NATO is headquartered, where the international community is expected to announce future support for Afghanistan in diverse fields.
Gen. Shaheem told reporters in Kabul that Afghanistan’s security situation was improving. “Our enemies tried throughout the winter to capture some parts of Afghanistan, but they could not reach their nefarious designs.”
In response to Taliban’s unusual winter offensive, Gen. Shaheem said they had launched “Operation Shafaq” which was currently underway in 15 provinces of the country.
The army chief said Taliban’s spring offensive was “war propaganda” and the Afghan army was ready to counter every type of attack by the rebels.
The Taliban two days ago announced the launch of their summer fighting season named after the group’s founder and long-time supreme leader Mullah Mohammad Omar, who reportedly died in 2013.
The United States, reacting to the Taliban’s announcement, has said it is nothing surprising or new as the Afghan rebels each year make such announcements.
“For lasting stability in Afghanistan and complete trust of Afghanistan people and to attract international assistance, we have prepared a five-year security plan. We want to present a comprehensive plan while going to the Warsaw summit,” Gen. Shaheem said.
He said the five-year plan aimed at improving the country’s security situation and bringing lasting peace had been carefully designed.
Meanwhile, deputy presidential spokesman Dawa Khan Minapal said the five-year plan was the first of its kind, in which all threats had been defined and ways to counter them explored.
“The plan defines enemy and the fight against him. All things including violence may increase or the country may come under enemy pressure are indentified in the plan.”
Minapal said everything the Afghan army needed for the next five years had been assessed in the plan. “It is a comprehensive plan and its implementation will bring under security cover all areas of Afghanistan and naturalize potential threats.”
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