Foreign troops to help secure 2014 elections

MAZAR-I-SHARIF (PAN): An International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) commander in the northern zone has said Afghan security personnel have the capacity to secure the 2014 elections on their own.
Addressing a news conference in Mazar-i-Sharif on Saturday evening, Maj. Gen. Jörg Vollmer said 2014 would be an important year to the Afghans because they themselves be providing security for the elections.
Since the previous polls, positive changes had been brought to the Afghan security forces, which had become capable of ensuring security in their country, the German general remarked.
In the northern zone, a threefold increase had happened in the number of Afghan forces, which had also been equipped with new weapons, he said, adding newly-established training centers had boosted their morale and professionalism.
Vollmer added: “Afghanistan is an independent country. Control of the polls rests with the Afghans themselves, who have the capability of providing security for the elections.”
He promised the foreign troops would assist the Afghan forces with security advice on polling day. Up to 700 German troops would remain in Afghanistan after 2014, he concluded.

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