NATO would welcome Ukraine's possible participation in its training mission in Afghanistan after 2014, Secretary General of the Alliance Anders Fogh Rasmussen has said.
In an exclusive interview with Interfax-Ukraine in Brussels, Rasmussen noted that the current NATO International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) combat operation would end by 2014, but the NATO Summit in Chicago decided that the alliance would retain a support mission beyond 2014, focused on training, assisting, and giving advice to the Afghan security forces.
“We have encouraged our ISAF partners to consider a possibility of a contribution to that training mission. So if Ukraine would be in a position to contribute to the training mission, we would warmly welcome this,” he said.
When asked about other possibilities of Ukraine’s participation in the NATO mission in Afghanistan, in particular the use of road and air transport means, Rasmussen again stressed that after 2014 the mission would focus on training.
“The core of that support mission after 2014 will be training activities, but obviously training also includes the possibility to transporting troops or trainers and equipment and maybe other elements needed to actually conduct such training activities – but the core of this mission will be training,” the secretary general said.