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Britain WILL send soldiers back to Afghanistan - and THIS is how many

13 May 2017

North Atlantic Treaty Organisation will continue its support for the global coalition fighting Daesh but will not engage in combat operations in Syria or Iraq, the alliance's Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said Thursday. Jens Stoltenberg says the scale and scope of the mission should be decided at an European Union summit in June, and that the forces will be non-combat units.

An upcoming summit of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation countries should consider what more other countries can do to support the military alliance, Prime Minister Theresa May has said. "We're open to that", Prime Minister Turnbull told reporters in Sydney.

The security situation in Afghanistan will further deteriorate even if there is a modest increase in US military support for the war-torn country, the top USA intelligence official said on Thursday, as President Donald Trump's administration weighs sending more forces to Afghanistan.

"We will need to continue to give financial assistance to Afghanistan for many years to come", Mr Richardson said.

President Trump met with National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster Tuesday to consider sending more troops to Afghanistan.

Faced with a resurgent Taliban, the Trump Administration is considering a ramp-up of the long-running war in Afghanistan.

In February the U.S. commander of foreign troops in Afghanistan, General John Nicholson, told a congressional hearing he needed several thousand more global troops to break a stalemate with the Taliban.

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Some 270 Australian personnel are stationed in the country, mostly in the capital Kabul in support, security and training roles.

In addition, the United States has about 1,500 more troops in a parallel mission, part of a counter-terrorism unit that mostly targets pockets of al Qaeda and Islamic State fighters.

"We will address our presence in Afghanistan at the leaders' meeting but we will also address what North Atlantic Treaty Organisation can do to step up its efforts to fight terrorism, including providing support to the counter-Isil coalition".

The team was looking at the mission and the strategy holistically, not just in Afghanistan, but beyond that country, the official added. "Without sorting out these two issues, there will be no peace in Afghanistan, whatever amount of money you spend here and whatever number of troops you send".

Last week, a U.S. government watchdog urged the Trump administration to effectively counter pernicious Afghan corruption and identify the factors that have prevented Kabul from building a strong security force for fighting insurgency. Several said a USA decision to send more troops would also send an important "hands-off" message to those powers.

Military chiefs have asked for more troops from North Atlantic Treaty Organisation members.

USA officials claimed that the military needed a bigger role in the Asian country to push the Taliban militant group back to the negotiating table.

Britain WILL send soldiers back to Afghanistan - and THIS is how many