France to withdraw remaining forces from Afghanistan

France to withdraw remaining forces from Afghanistan

Fri Dec 19, 2014 10:2PM GMT

France will officially end its 13-year military mission in Afghanistan and withdraw all of its remaining troops from the South Asian country, the French Defense Ministry says.

The remaining 150 French soldiers, mostly responsible for training afghan forces, will leave the Afghan capital Kabul on December 31, putting an end to French troops’ mission as part of the US-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), the ministry announced on Friday.

France stationed nearly 4,000 troops in Afghanistan to cooperate with soldiers from other countries such as the United States, Britain, Germany, and Italy.

A total of 89 French soldiers lost their lives and almost 700 were injured during their mission in Afghanistan.

France ended its combat mission in Afghanistan by the end of 2012, two years before the planned withdrawal of US-led coalition forces from the war-torn country.

About 12,000 foreign forces, mainly from the US, will remain in Afghanistan beyond 2015 in a support mission as the NATO mission in the country ends this month.

The US and its allies invaded Afghanistan in 2001 as part of Washington’s so-called war on terror. The offensive removed the Taliban from power, but insecurity continues to rise across the country, despite the presence of thousands of US-led troops.

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