News / Europe

Britain, Germany, France All Plan Afghan Troop Withdrawals

French army Captain Jeremy Reynaud (C) walks with U.S. soldiers after a joint patrol with Afghan troops in a village in Kharuti, in the mountains of Wardak Province (File)
French army Captain Jeremy Reynaud (C) walks with U.S. soldiers after a joint patrol with Afghan troops in a village in Kharuti, in the mountains of Wardak Province (File)

Britain, Germany and France all say they plan to follow the U.S. lead and withdraw their troops from the Afghan warfront.

The three European allies on Thursday quickly announced the eventual end of their involvement in fighting Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan after U.S. President Barack Obama on Wednesday night spelled out his plan to withdraw 33,000 of the 100,000 American troops over the next 14 months. The three allies have much smaller contingents in Afghanistan as part of a U.S.- and NATO-led operation.

British Prime Minister David Cameron spoke to Obama before his televised address and confirmed that, like the U.S., Britain would end its military role in Afghanistan by the end of 2014, leaving Afghans responsible for their own security. Britain has about 9,500 troops in Afghanistan, the second biggest total.

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said his country plans to start to reduce its contingent of 5,000 armed forces by the end of this year. German involvement in the Afghan war is deeply unpopular on the homefront, with 52 German soldiers killed since Germany joined the effort in January 2002.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy said his country's troops would be withdrawn on roughly the same proportion and schedule as that of the U.S. France has 4,000 troops in Afghanistan and 62 of its troops have been killed.

NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen also welcomed President Obama's announcement, calling it the "natural result" of the progress the alliance has made there.  He stressed Mr. Obama's decision was made in close consultation with NATO allies.

 

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.

You May Like

At International AIDS Conference One Goal, Many Paths

The 12,000 delegates attending 20th International AIDS Conference in Melbourne have vastly different visions about how to eradicate disease More

Disasters May Doom Malaysia’s Flag Carrier

Even before loss of two jets loaded with passengers on international flights, company had been operating in red for three years, accumulating deficit of $1.3 billion More

Afghan Presidential Vote Audit Continues Despite Glitches

Process has been marred by walkouts by representatives of two competing candidates, Abdullah Abdullah and Ashraf Ghani 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.
Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Agei
X
Elizabeth Lee
July 20, 2014 2:36 AM
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 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.
Video

Video Diplomatic Crisis Grows Over MH17 Plane Crash

The Malaysia Airlines crash in eastern Ukraine is drawing reaction from leaders around the world. With suspicions growing that a surface-to-air missile shot down the aircraft, there are increasing tensions in the international community over who is to blame. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Undocumented Immigrants Face Perilous Journey to US, No Guarantees

Every day, hundreds of undocumented immigrants from Central America attempt the arduous journey through Mexico and turn themselves over to U.S. border patrol -- with the hope that they will not be turned away. But the dangers they face along the way are many, and as Ramon Taylor reports from the Rio Grande Valley in Texas, their fate rests on more than just the reception they get at the US border.
Video

Video Scientists Create Blackest Material Ever

Of all the black things in the universe only the infamous "black holes" are so black that not even a tiny amount of light can bounce back. But scientists have managed to create material almost as black, and it has enormous potential use. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Fog Collector Transforming Maasai Water Harvesting in Kenya

The Maasai people of Kenya are known for their cattle-herding, nomadic lifestyle. But it's an existence that depends on access to adequate water for their herds and flocks. Lenny Ruvaga reports for VOA, on a "fog collector."

AppleAndroid