News / Asia

NATO’s Post-2014 Afghan Mission Uncertain

Italian soldiers with the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) Sept, 10, 2013. (AP Photo/Hoshang Hashimi)
Italian soldiers with the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) Sept, 10, 2013. (AP Photo/Hoshang Hashimi)
As Kabul and Washington are finalizing a bilateral security and defense agreement to define the U.S. military presence in Afghanistan after 2014, some NATO members have also indicated a willingness to keep troops in the country after their UN-authorized mandate expires on December 31 2014.
 
Allied states such as Germany, Britain and even Georgia have said they will each keep forces in Afghanistan beyond 2014 under a redefined NATO mission.
 
However, it’s yet to be decided, between Kabul and NATO, under what arrangements NATO forces will remain in Afghanistan alongside their U.S. allies.
 
“In principle we’re not opposed to NATO’s presence in Afghanistan after 2014 but NATO has to come up with proposals and we’ll discuss as we have with the U.S.,” Aimal Faizi, a spokesman for President Hamid Karzai told VOA’s Dari Service.
 
“We would not prefer bilateral agreements with every state but prefer an agreement with NATO that will cover all forces operating under NATO’s command,” said Faizi adding that small NATO member states like Georgia could not provide effective help to Afghanistan in its tough challenges to peace, he said.  
 
U.S. needs allies
 
Michael O’Hanlon, an expert at Brookings Institution says the U.S. will need its NATO allies present in Afghanistan post-2014 as it embarks on a new mission there.
 
“The Obama Administration wants to keep U.S. forces level [in Afghanistan] as low as possible partly for budgetary reasons and also because it’s important to have international legitimacy that comes with a multinational approach,” O’Hanlon said.
 
As of October 2013, more than 86-thousand service personnel from 49 countries, with 60,000 of them from the U.S., were deployed under NATO’s International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) structure in Afghanistan, according to NATO figures.
 
NATO has 28 member states but 21 other allied states like Jordan, Bahrain and Mongolia have also contributed troops to ISAF.
 
Some countries such as Canada and the Netherlands have already withdrawn forces from Afghanistan and it is still unclear how many of the remaining allied states would like to keep a military footprint there after 2014.
 
“Everyone has been waiting to see what happens to the U.S.-Afghanistan bilateral security agreement,” said O’Hanlon, “I would assume, however, that the agreement with United States could be a template and a model for other countries.” 
 
End of UN role
 
The UN Security Council has authorized NATO’s mission in Afghanistan under resolution 2120 which will expire on December 31 2014 and with that the UN role in authorizing the mission will come to an end.
 
While authorized by the UN Security Council since 2003 on annual basis, NATO-led ISAF is not a UN peacekeeping force. Its mandate covers operations such as conducting stability and security actions to assisting in the development of Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF).
 
“The new mandate of NATO in Afghanistan will be very limited and mostly related to training and equipping ANSF,” said Aimal Faizi.
 
Speaking to VOA on condition of anonymity, one senior Afghan official said President Karzai would not offer immunity from Afghan laws to non-U.S. NATO troops.
 
Raids on Afghan homes, another prerogative offered to U.S. forces in Afghanistan under exceptional circumstances, would also be denied to NATO allies, the official said.
 
It took the U.S. over a year and numerous rounds of contentious negotiations to finalize a draft security and defense agreement with the Karzai government. It is still unclear whether President Karzai will eventually put his signature on the agreement, now approved by a Loya Jirga of 2,500 delegates from across Afghanistan, in the next five months of his presidency.
 
If the U.S. – Afghanistan draft security agreement is a lesson to learn from, any agreement with NATO countries will be a matter for the next president of Afghanistan to deal with.

Akmal Dawi is a managing editor at Voice Of America’s Dari Service.

You May Like

Turkey's Erdogan: Women Not Equal to Men

Speaking at conference in Istanbul, President Erdogan says Islam has defined a position for women: motherhood More

Ahead of SAARC Summit, Subdued Expectations

Some regional analysts say distrust between Pakistani, Indian officials has slowed SAARC's progress over the year More

Philippines Leery of Development on Reef Reclamation in S. China Sea

Chinese land reclamation projects in area have been ongoing for years, but new satellite imagery reportedly shows China’s massive construction project More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Wahid from: Kabul
December 08, 2013 9:27 AM
As we see all Afghanistan people want to be signed the security agreement with US and this matter effect a lot to all the thing in Afghanistan no buddy feel secure until this agreement signed so we all want the agreement must signed very soon . thanks

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Changei
X
November 24, 2014 10:09 PM
Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Change

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Mali Attempts to Shut Down Ebola Transmission Chain

Senegal and Nigeria were able to stop small Ebola outbreaks by closely monitoring those who had contact with the sick person and quickly isolating anyone with symptoms. Mali is now scrambling to do the same. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Mali on what the country is doing to shut down the chain of transmission.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid