News / Europe

NATO to Discuss Anti-Missile System for Turkey

A Turkish soldier takes up position near the Syrian border in the Turkish town of Ceylanpinar, Sanliurfa province, November 30, 2012.
A Turkish soldier takes up position near the Syrian border in the Turkish town of Ceylanpinar, Sanliurfa province, November 30, 2012.
Al Pessin
NATO foreign ministers will discuss sending a missile defense system to Turkey in response to the continuing violence in Syria. In Brussels, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said the regularly scheduled two-day ministers' meeting this week will also discuss other aspects of the Syria issue, as well as NATO's operations in Afghanistan.  

NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen addresses a news conference in Brussels, Belgium, November 5, 2012.NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen addresses a news conference in Brussels, Belgium, November 5, 2012.
x
NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen addresses a news conference in Brussels, Belgium, November 5, 2012.
NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen addresses a news conference in Brussels, Belgium, November 5, 2012.
Secretary General Rasmussen said the NATO ministers will discuss Turkey's request for the American Patriot missile defense system on Wednesday.

The request follows Syrian government shelling near the Turkish border that hit some areas inside Turkey. Rasmussen said the NATO ministers will also discuss the plan with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who is coming to Brussels for a regular NATO-Russia dialogue meeting.

The secretary general made the remarks to visiting Afghan reporters at NATO headquarters on Monday. He said the alliance's commitment to Afghanistan will continue, even after its combat role ends in two years.

But he said the Afghan government must fulfill its commitments to the international community to improve governance, fight corruption, protect human rights - including women's rights - and to hold transparent and credible elections in 2014 and 2015.

“Our partnership with Afghanistan is a two-way street," he said. "We are taking steps to deliver on our commitment, and we expect the Afghan authorities to deliver on theirs.”

Secretary General Rasmussen said he expects Afghan security forces to be able to take full responsibility for the country by the end of 2014 as planned. He repeated that the NATO role will change to support and training only at that time. He said that will be a focus of the foreign ministers' meeting, along with ways to ensure future foreign funding for Afghan forces.

Rasmussen said the size and missions of the post-2014 NATO force have not been determined, and will not be decided until later in the planning process.

Speaking via satellite from Kabul, the Canadian general who is the deputy commander of NATO's training mission in Afghanistan said Monday that Afghan forces are already leading 80 percent of security operations.

Major General Jim Ferron said Afghan forces control areas where 75 percent of Afghans live. He said their increased combat role explains the high level of Afghan casualties, which a senior Afghan commander puts at an average of 110 per month for the Afghan Army and 200 per month for the police.

The NATO training effort has had numerous problems over the years, including a recent increase in attacks by Afghan troops on their NATO partners. But General Ferron said the vetting process has been improved and the training is back on track.

“The planning and the preparation, the training and the equipping is right now the best that the international community can provide," said Ferron. "We are doing the very best that we can to prepare the Afghan National Security Forces to sustain the lead in a very difficult combat environment.”

In addition to training soldiers and small units, the NATO effort is focusing on developing the Afghan Air Force, and the army's capabilities in heavy weapons, intelligence, and such specialties as bomb disposal and emergency response.

You May Like

Could Nemtsov Threaten Putin in Death as in Life?

Dynamic and debonair opposition leader had supported liberal economic reforms, criticized Russian president's aggression in Ukraine More

Oil Smuggling Highlights Challenges in Shutting Down IS Finances

Pentagon spokesman says Islamic State 'certainly continues to get revenue from the oil industry black market' but that airstrikes have made a dent More

India Focuses on Infrastructure, Investment to Propel Economy

Government expects economy to grow at 8 to 8.5 percent in next fiscal year More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Casei
X
Katherine Gypson
February 25, 2015 11:30 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Hurt Nascent Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Industry

Falling oil prices are helping consumers purchase cheaper petroleum at the pump. But that’s made hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” less economically viable for the companies in the United States invested in the process. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports on one Midwestern town that was hoping to change its fortunes by cashing in on the next big U.S. oil boom.
Video

Video Fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan Fuels Mass Displacement

Heavy fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state is causing hundreds of thousands to flee into uncertain conditions. Local aid organizations estimate as many as 400,000 civilians have been internally displaced since the conflict began more than three years ago, while another 250,000 have fled across the border to refugee camps in South Sudan. VOA's Adam Bailes reports.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.
Video

Video A Filmmaker Discovers Her Biracial Identity in "Little White Lie

Lacey Schwartz grew up in an upper middle-class Jewish family, in a town in upstate New York where almost everyone she knew was white. She assumed that she was, as well. Her recent documentary, Little White Lie, tells the story of how she uncovered the secret of her true racial background. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more on the film.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video US-Cuba Normalization Talks Resume Friday

Negotiations aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba resume Friday. On the table: lifting a half-century trade embargo and easing banking and travel restrictions. There's opposition in Congress, but some analysts say there may be sufficient political and economic incentives in both nations for a potential breakthrough this year. VOA's Mil Arcega reports.
Video

Video Pakistan's Deadline For SIM Registration Has Cellphone Users Scrambling

Pakistani cell phone users have until midnight Thursday to register their SIM cards, or their service will be cut off. While some privacy experts worry about government intrusion, many Pakistanis are just worried about keeping their phone lines open. VOA Deewa reporter Arshad Muhmand has more from Peshawar.
Video

Video Myanmar Warns Factory Workers to End Strikes

Outside Myanmar's main city Yangon, thousands of workers walked off their jobs earlier this month demanding a doubling of their wages, pay raises after a year and input from labor unions on industrial regulations. Since Friday, the standoff has grown more tense as police moved in to disrupt the sit-ins, resulting in clashes that injured people from both sides. VOA correspondent Steve Herman visited industrial zones which have become a focus of Myanmar's fledgling workers rights movement.
Video

Video Oscar Winners Do More Than Thank the Academy

The Academy Awards presentation is Hollywood’s night to reward the best movies from the previous year. It’s typically a lot of glitter, a lot of thank you’s, a lot of speeches. But many of this year’s speeches carried messages beyond the thank you's. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti takes a look.

All About America

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