Germany to begin pullout from occupied Afghanistan in late 2011

The disclosure came during a trip to Pakistan by German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle.

Germany to begin pullout from occupied Afghanistan in late 2011

The German government will ask parliament this month for approval to start withdrawing troops from occupied Afghanistan at the end of the year, excerpts of the proposal obtained by Reuters showed on Saturday.

The disclosure came during a trip to Pakistan by German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle.

The pullout proposal, drafted by foreign and defence ministry officials, is set to be agreed by Chancellor Angela Merkel's cabinet next week before it is sent to the lower house of parliament, the Bundestag, for approval on Jan. 28. The measure is likely to pass easily, with opposition backing.

"The government is confident it will be able to reduce the presence of German troops from the end of 2011, during the handover of responsibility for security," the proposal reads.

Germany has around 4,600 forces based in the north.

The invasion is deeply unpopular among Germans and has brought down both the chief of the armed forces and a cabinet minister over a German-ordered air strike last year in which civilians were also killed.

A German president had to resign last year after saying during a visit to Afghanistan that Germany should use its armed forces to back its foreign trade interests.


Agencies

Last Mod: 09 Ocak 2011, 17:51
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