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Germany

Germany Boosts Number of Police Trainers in Afghanistan

The German cabinet decided Wednesday to beef up its police trainers and experts deployed in Afghanistan as part of an EU mission.

A German police trainer in Afghanistan

Germany currently has 44 police and civilian experts in Afghanistan under the EU mission

A government spokesman said Wednesday, Sept 24 that the country will almost triple the number of police trainers as part of an EU mission to 120.

In addition, German police experts working in Afghanistan will be doubled under a bilateral agreement to 20 and the country will send several short-term experts, he said.

Germany is the biggest contributor to the mission. Germany currently has 44 police and civilian experts in Afghanistan under the EU mission.

The EUPOL mission will now have 120 German police officers and civil experts, instead of the 60 currently working there. Experts from 21 countries are taking part in the project, which began in 2007 to help the nation create a sustainable police force.

Worsening security

Earlier this year, European Union ministers decided to boost the size of the bloc's police training mission in Afghanistan to try to improve security in the face of mounting attacks on international forces by a resurgent Taliban.

In a separate bilateral arrangement, the Berlin foreign and interior ministries said Germany would also boost a direct aid scheme for the Afghanistan police.

A German training school for police is to open next month in Mazar-e-Sharif in northern Afghanistan. Between 40 and 50 officers will serve at the new facility beginning in October.

Some 24,000 Afghan police have been trained by German police experts since 2002.

Germany also has 3,220 soldiers in the 40-nation NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF). They are largely based in the relatively calm north of Afghanistan though they have increasingly been the target of attacks and suicide bombings.

Germany has come under pressure from its NATO allies to raise troops levels and move soldiers to the more dangerous south of the country to help fight a growing Taliban insurgency.

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