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Afghan security forces to deal with the bloody Taliban insurgency after 2014 when most foreign combat forces will have withdrawn.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

Lebanese Media Unite to Support Palestinians in Gaza

Joint newscast billed as Arab world’s first unified news bulletin in support of Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip More

Photogallery Australian PM Alleges ‘Coverup’ at MH17 Crash Site

Meanwhile, Russia's ambassador to Malaysia denies plane's black boxes were opened before they were handed over to Malaysian officials More

Despite Advances in AIDS Treatment, Stigma Lingers

Leading immunologist tells VOA that stigma is often what prevents those infected with disease from seeking treatment 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.
IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Formi
X
July 22, 2014 10:26 AM
Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Chicago’s Argonne Lab Developing Battery of the Future

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science awarded a $120 million grant to a new technology center focused on battery development - headquartered at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago, Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there scientists are making the next technological breakthroughs in energy storage.
Video

Video In NW Pakistan, Army Offensive Causes Massive Number of Displaced

Pakistan’s army offensive in North Waziristan has resulted in the large-scale displacement of the local population. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from northwest Pakistan where authorities say around 80 percent of the estimated 1 million internally displaced persons [IDPs] have settled in Bannu district, while much of the remaining 20 percent are scattered in nearby cities.
Video

Video Kurdish Peshmerga Force Secures Kirkuk, Its Oil

The Kurdistan regional government has sent its Peshmerga troops into the adjacent province of Kirkuk to drive out insurgents, and to secure the area's rich oil fields. By doing this, the regional government has added a fourth province to the three it officially controls. The oil also provides revenue that could make an independent Kurdistan economically strong. VOA’s Jeffrey Young went out with the Peshmerga and filed this report.
Video

Video Malaysia Reeling: Second Air Disaster in Four Months

Malaysia is reeling from the second air disaster in four months involving the country’s flag carrier. Flight 340 vanished in March and despite an extensive search, no debris has been found. And on Thursday, Flight 17, likely hit by a surface-to-air missile, came apart over eastern Ukraine. The two incidents together have left more than 500 people dead. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Kuala Lumpur.

AppleAndroid