News / Asia

Security Transfer Sparks Pride, Concern Among Afghans

After more than 10 year NATO and US have started withdrawal of their equipments from Afghanistan, (File photo).
After more than 10 year NATO and US have started withdrawal of their equipments from Afghanistan, (File photo).
Sharon Behn
Afghans welcomed their national forces taking responsibility of security across the country, ending 12 years of US and NATO-led control. Many are concerned about the Afghan security forces’ logistic capabilities to face down violent militant networks operating in the country.

Barely an hour before a simple closed door ceremony was held here in Kabul marking the transfer of security from NATO to Afghan forces, a suicide bomb exploded in the heart of the city, killing three and injuring dozens.

Standing outside the bomb-crumpled metal gate, next to his clothes still spattered with blood, Mohamad Asad said he thought Afghan security forces could protect the country. But that neighboring Pakistan was damaging the process.

“The national army can defend our Afghan nation, but with Pakistan interfering, security will be impossible. If Pakistan is against the Afghan national army, it will be impossible to have a secure Afghanistan.”

The Taliban and other militant networks are believed to take refuge in Pakistan.
Some critics are skeptical about the ability of the 350,000 Afghan security forces to deal with the bloody Taliban insurgency after 2014 when most foreign combat forces will have withdrawn.

Looking at the twisted metal left from Tuesday’s blast, Ezatullah said he was worried. Afghans often only use one name. “Me and my family are very worried about this, the situation and security in Afghanistan are not good,” he stated.

Senior administration officials in Washington said the handover was a key milestone on the way to the complete transition of responsibility for security to Afghans by the end of next year.

Speaking in a International Security Assistance Force compound in Kabul, behind high blast walls and rolls of barbed wire, NATO forces chief Gen. Joseph Dunford was more optimistic.

“Do I believe today that the Afghans have the capability to assume lead security responsibility in Afghanistan, the answer is yes. Do I believe the Afghan forces can secure the elections in 2014, the answer is yes, and do I believe we can effect full security transition with the mission that secretary general outlined today from a train, advise and assist perspective at the end of 2014," Dunford noted. "The answer is yes.”

Dunford said the final security transfer in the more unstable areas of eastern and southeastern Afghanistan would happen over the next five months.

He added that NATO forces would continue to train and assist their Afghan counterparts, as well as give air support and medical evacuation services.

But not everyone in Kabul shares Gen. Dunford’s views. Provincial council official, Angiza Shinwari of eastern Nangarhar province predicts more violence.

“I am not optimistic about this transition, because our national forces are not trained with patriotism, and they are not trained in what they need to be trained. And they did not receive the equipment that they need to defend their land and people. Because of that I am not optimistic on the security transition,” said Shinwari.

Dunford said talks are underway between the United States and Afghanistan on a bilateral security agreement that is to take effect once international combat forces leave at the end of 2014.

That agreement he said, will be partly based on the performance of the Afghan forces over the summer, next year’s presidential elections, the pace of political reconciliation with the Taliban and cooperation from regional players, an oblique reference to neighboring Pakistan.

You May Like

Report: $60 Billion Leaves Africa Illegally Each Year

Report by joint UN and African Union panel says African countries need to take concrete measures to stop illegal money flow from continent each year More

Video Spy Murder Probe Likely to Further Strain British-Russian Relations

Some analysts say Russian Tu-95 bombers were flying near British airspace to warn Britain about an inquest into a murdered Russian spy More

Mugabe Defends Image Amid Controversy at Close of AU Summit

He rejects concerns about how the West might perceive his leadership, saying he's focused on African development More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Spy Murder Probe Likely to Further Strain British-Russian Relationsi
X
Henry Ridgwell
January 31, 2015 10:50 PM
Relations between Russia and the West are set to become even more strained amid an inquiry in London into the murder of a former Russian spy. Lawyers at the inquiry accuse Russian President Vladimir Putin of directing a "mafia state." Meanwhile, Royal Air Force fighters intercepted Russian bombers close to British airspace this week, prompting authorities to summon Moscow’s ambassador. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Spy Murder Probe Likely to Further Strain British-Russian Relations

Relations between Russia and the West are set to become even more strained amid an inquiry in London into the murder of a former Russian spy. Lawyers at the inquiry accuse Russian President Vladimir Putin of directing a "mafia state." Meanwhile, Royal Air Force fighters intercepted Russian bombers close to British airspace this week, prompting authorities to summon Moscow’s ambassador. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Ukrainian Neighborhood Divided Over Conflict

People in eastern Ukraine’s Donetsk and Luhansk districts find themselves squarely in the path of advancing Russian-backed rebels, who want to take back the territory they held at the beginning of the conflict last year. Many local residents are afraid, but others would welcome the change, even when a rebel shell lands in their neighborhood. From the Luhansk district, 15 kilometers from where the Ukrainian government marks the front line, VOA’s Al Pessin reports.
Video

Video Threat of Creeping Lava Has Hawaiians on Edge

Residents of the small town of Pahoa on the Big Island of Hawaii face an advancing threat from the Kilauea volcano. Local residents are keeping a watchful eye on creeping lava. Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Jefferson's Library Continues to Impress, 200 Years Later

Two hundred years after the U.S. Congress purchased a huge collection of books belonging to former President Thomas Jefferson, it remains one of America’s greatest literal treasures and has become the centerpiece of Washington’s Library of Congress. VOA’s Deborah Block reports.
Video

Video Egypt's Suez Canal Dreams Tempered by Continued Unrest

Egypt plans to expand the Suez Canal, raising hopes that the end of its economic crisis may be in sight. But some analysts say they expect the project may cost too much and take too long to make life better for everyday Egyptians. VOA's Heather Murdock reports.
Video

Video Pro-Kremlin Youth Group Creatively Promotes 'Patriotic' Propaganda

As Russia's President Vladimir Putin faces international pressure over Ukraine and a failing economy, unofficial domestic groups are rallying to his support. One such youth organization, CET, or Network, uses creative multimedia to appeal to Russia's urban youth with patriotic propaganda. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Filmmakers Produce Hand-Painted Documentary on Van Gogh

The troubled life of the famous 19th century Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh has been told through many books and films, but never in the way a group of filmmakers now intends to do. "Loving Vincent " will be the first ever feature-length film made of animated hand-painted images, done in the style of the late artist. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Issues or Ethnicity? Question Divides Nigeria

As Nigeria goes to the polls next month, many expect the two top presidential contenders to gain much of their support from constituencies organized along ethnic or religious lines. But are faith and regional blocs really what political power in Nigeria is about? Chris Stein reports.
Video

Video Rock-Consuming Organisms Alter Views of Life Processes

Scientists thought they knew much about how life works, until a discovery more than two decades ago challenged conventional beliefs. Scientists found that there are organisms that breathe rocks. And it is only recently that the scientific community is accepting that there are organisms that could get energy out of rocks. Correspondent Elizabeth Lee reports.
Video

Video Paris Attacks Highlight Global Weapons Black Market

As law enforcement officials piece together how the Paris and Belgian terror cells carried out their recent attacks, questions are being asked about how they obtained military grade assault weapons - which are illegal in the European Union. As VOA's Jeff Swicord reports, experts say there is a very active worldwide black market for these weapons, and criminals and terrorists are buying.
Video

Video Activists Accuse China of Targeting Religious Freedom

The U.S.-based Chinese religious rights group ChinaAid says 2014 was the worst year for religious freedom in China since the end of the Cultural Revolution. As Ye Fan reports, activists say Beijing has been tightening religious controls ever since Chinese leader Xi Jinping came to office. Hu Wei narrates.
Video

Video Theologians Cast Doubt on Morality of Drone Strikes

In 2006, stirred by photos of U.S. soldiers mistreating Iraqi prisoners, a group of American faith leaders and academics launched the National Religious Campaign Against Torture. It played an important role in getting Congress to investigate, and the president to ban, torture. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid