02:03 GMT30 October 2020
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    James Dobbins, who served as US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan in 2013-2014, said that foreign troops in Afghanistan provide essential advice and assistance, while Afghan forces are doing all the fighting.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Responsibility for combating the Taliban insurgency will continue to largely fall on the Afghan army and police, while foreign forces will stay on solely to provide essential advice and assistance, James Dobbins, who served as US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan in 2013-2014, told Sputnik.

    On Tuesday, the United Kingdom deployed a group of military personnel to the southern Afghan province of Helmand, where Afghan government forces recently suffered a defeat to the Taliban. The UK Ministry of Defense has stated that the personnel will train local security forces.

    "The major burden for combating the Taliban will continue to fall on the Afghan army and police. US and other international forces will remain in Afghanistan in small numbers to provide advice and assistance. The Afghan army is likely to prevail in Sangine, as it did in Kunduz, but only after serious fighting," Dobbins, who also was the US ambassador to the European Union, and is now Distinguished Chair in Diplomacy and Security at the RAND Corporation, said.

    Dobbins added that foreign troops in the country provide essential advice and assistance, while Afghan forces are doing all the fighting. UK soldiers were sent to Helmand to respond to the latest Taliban attack, just like American advisers were deployed to Kunduz under similar circumstances last month.

    The Taliban has recently stepped up its offensive in Afghanistan, seizing entire regions and killing national and foreign personnel. Military casualties had reached 4,000 by August this year, according to Pentagon estimates.

    The US-led NATO mission in Afghanistan formally ended its 13-year International Security Assistance Force combat operations on December 31, 2014.

    The foreign presence transitioned to a non-combat Resolute Support Mission, with nearly 13,000 foreign training and advice personnel deployed in the country this year.


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    war on terror, Taliban, James Dobbins, United Kingdom, US, Afghanistan
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