Chief of the Defence Force attends talks on Afghanistan
24 January 2014
Chief of the Defence Force, General David Hurley met with military leaders in Brussels this week for important discussions on the future of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) mission in Afghanistan beyond 2014.
"We are at an important point in our planning - NATO is working with Afghan authorities to establish the legal framework for a post-2014 operation and the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) is working to ensure we continue to support the Afghan National Security Forces' (ANSF) development,” General Hurley said.
"Our discussions this week will shape the international community's continuing contribution to Afghanistan from 2015 onward and the future of the NATO-led train, advise and assist mission."
Following the end of Australia's mission in Uruzgan, the ANSF have assumed full responsibility for security in the province and the Australian Defence Force (ADF) has shifted its focus to contribute to national programs that support the ANSF.
"Our mission in Afghanistan has not ended, but it has changed, and we will continue to support the ANSF as we move toward the end of the current ISAF mission in December 2014 and prepare for the next operation," General Hurley said.
Around 400 ADF personnel will remain in Afghanistan throughout 2014, training and advising the ANSF to assist with the local forces' continuing development. Australia has also committed US$100 million annually for three years from 2015 as part of international efforts to sustain the ANSF.
General Hurley also used his meetings with European and NATO military leaders to reinforce the importance of maintaining practical cooperation between NATO and non-NATO partners to ensure they remain capable of working together.
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