January 18, 2018

British Prime Ministers visits troops in southern Afghanistan

By Sajad - Wed Jul 18 2012, 9:13 pm

The British prime minister backed up a pledge to pull more troops out of Afghanistan next year, during a previously unannounced trip to a restive province on Wednesday.

Cameron flew into Camp Bastion, the main British base in Helmand Province, after an overnight flight on an RAF C17 Globemaster military transporter from Britain.

The Prime Minister said he is “absolutely full of support” for the armed forces, adding: “We do ask them to do a lot on our behalf.”

Britain’s contingent is second in size only to U.S. troop strength among Western forces in Afghanistan. Britain plans to pull 500 troops out by December but has not given a timetable for others to leave. NATO plans to turn over security responsibility to Afghan forces by the end of 2014.

The prime minister said he was confident that Britain remains on track to withdraw all combat troops by the end of 2014 because the process of handing control to Afghan forces was successfully under way.

A total of 422 British personnel have been killed in Afghanistan since the conflict began in 2001. At least three British soldiers were killed on July 1 by an Afghan policeman as they attended a meeting of local officials.

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