BRUSSELS (Pajhwok): NATO amid increasing casualty rates in the war.
“It may actually become worse before it gets better in Afghanistan,” Stoltenberg said after two days of talks with NATO foreign ministers in Brussels.
Attacks by the Taliban could increase in an attempt by the militants to strengthen their hand at the negotiating table, Stoltenberg said.
However, coalition leaders have warned that the pace of casualties among Afghan security forces is unsustainable.
Since 2015, more than 28,000 Afghan police and soldiers have been killed in combat. The US also has experienced more casualties in Afghanistan this year — 14 Americans have died in the country in 2018.
“We are aware of increasing civilian and military personnel casualties, all these problems further make important the continuation of our support with Afghanistan,” he said.
Recalling suicide attacks and incidents of violence in recent months, Stoltenberg said NATO would continue its support to Afghan forces. “A peaceful and stable Afghanistan would take us to peace and stability,” he said.
The secretary general termed situation in Afghanistan as unstable but also hailed the conduct of Wolesi Jirga took part.
He also welcomed efforts for peace process and historic ceasefire in June between the Afghan government and the Taliban.
He termed the role of regional countries as important in the Afghan peace process and asked them to deny sanctuaries and support to the Taliban and back an Afghan led and owned peace process. He reiterated NATO’s support to Afghan owned and Afghan led peace process.