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Germany

German Role in Afghan Rapid Response Teams to Grow: Reports

As the demands placed on the German military in Afghanistan increase, the defense ministry is considering tripling the number of troops participating in rapid response teams, according to media reports.

German airborne rangers patrol in armored vehicles as part of the ISAF in Afghanistan

More Germans my be filing into Afghanistan as part of NATO's Quick Reaction Force

Up to three times as many German soldiers as originally planned could begin fighting in Afghanistan as part of the Quick Reaction Force, news weeklies Spiegel and Focus reported ahead of publication on Monday, Dec. 8.

NATO plans call for an increase in the number of troops serving in the Quick Reaction Force (QRF) from the current 200 to a total of 600, the magazines said. It remained, however, unclear if Berlin would supply all the troops or if some would also come from other nations.

The German Defense Ministry does not have plans for sending additional Bundeswehr troops to Afghanistan, a spokesman said Saturday.

Germany has a total of about 3,500 soldiers stationed Afghanistan. Germany's area of command under the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force expanded in July and now includes a Taliban stronghold.

The Spiegel also reported that an international force made up of Afghans, Germans and Norwegians is planning a winter offensive into the Ghormach District in northeastern Afghanistan.

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