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Italy renews commitment to Afghanistan

Italy renews commitment to Afghanistan

Mar 31, 2012 - 20:13

HERAT CITY (PANinfo-icon): Italian Defence Minister Giampaolo Di Paola, during a visit to western Herat province on Saturday, said his country would remain committed to supporting Afghanistaninfo-icon.

Speaking at a ceremony that marked the change of command at the Italian provincial reconstructioninfo-icon team (PRTinfo-icon) office, Di Paola said his country would stay committed to Afghanistan until the mission of their soldiers was completed.

The outgoing Italian PRT commander, Gen. Luciano Portolano, handed over the change to the team’s new commander Gen. Luigi Chiapperini at the ceremony also attended by NATOinfo-icon commander Gen. John Allen and other civil and military officials.

The visiting Italian minister, however, did not say when the PRT mission was going to complete but said their efforts for Afghanistan’s development in partnership with the Kabulinfo-icon government would continue.

The NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAFinfo-icon) soldiers are scheduled to leave Afghanistan by 2014, as the security transition from foreign soldiers to Afghan lead is already underway.

Italy has 4,200 soldiers most of them based in Herat and other provinces such as Farah, Ghorinfo-icon and Badghis provinces. So far 50 Italian soldiers have been killed.


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