Afghan Troops to Undergo Training in Georgia Too
28 February, 2013
Afghan Troops to Undergo Training in Georgia Too
12 years after the ISAF was launched in Afghanistan, NATO braces itself for painful pursuit of an optimal scenario of future Western cooperation with the Kabul Authorities in light of the looming end of the ISAF mission by 2014. Tbilisi is eager more than even Brussels to learn what to expect next because almost 1600 Georgian troops operating under the ISAF in Afghanistan is the largest among the military units of non-NATO countries participat
ing in the mission.
Recent NATO Ministerial in Brussels was the first high-level official event where Irakli Alasania took part in the capacity of the Defense Minister and the Head of the delegation of a NATO aspirant country.
He stated that after the ISAF mission, Afghan soldiers will continue training and education in Georgia. In addition, Georgian military instructors will train local military human resources in Afghanistan as well. In Georgia, few people are aware that apart from the troops stationed in the Helmand province and Kabul, several dozen Georgian military officers alternatingly train local troops in various Afghan provinces. They are Georgian artillerists mainly who in tandem with their French counterparts teach Afghan soldiers the use of Soviet L/30 haubitze and 82mm and 120mm mortar launchers.
As for the training of Afghan troops in Georgia, it may start in the post-ISAF period, i.e. two years later, most probably it would take place in different training centres of Georgian armed forces. The Training Command of the Georgian Army’s United HQ runs Sachkhere Mountain Training School, Krtsanisi National Training Centre, NCO Training School and Armored Vehicle Training Centre. The most notable among them is Sachkhere Mountain Training School. It boasts the status of Partnership for Peace (PfP) Program Training and Education Centre awarded by NATO. Given that Afghanistan is a mountainous country, its Authorities must be interested in mountain training of officers from their special forces in accordance with NATO standards.
It seems acceptable for the Georgian side that the program of training the Afghan officers in Sachkhere Mountain Training School will be cunducted with the NATO funding. However, everything depends on the agreement of the NATO leadership and Official Kabul because with the consent of President Karzai, close cooperation with Afghanistan may cease to exist once the ISAF is over.
According to the Administration of the Afghan President, local population goes hand in hand with American Special Forces, torturing and killing people regularly. The Afghan Authorities assert that they approached the ISAF Command, requesting investigation of those crimes but in vain.
Experts suppose that a withdrawal of the most battle-hardened units of American Special Forces from Vardak province, which is located south-west of Kabul, would greatly increase risks of Taliban attack on the Afghan capital from that direction. While the ISAF Command and Afghan Authorities maintain active working relations with each other, these relations are being ideal due to a number of objective and subjective reasons.
In words of Georgian Defense Minister Irakli Alasania, Georgian military contingent will stay in Afghanistan till the end of the ISAF mission without any changes of its composition, in order to ensure security jointly with American, British and Australian troops during the elections planned in Afghanistan.
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