Tags: brown | UK | troops | afghan

UK's Brown Wants 5,000 More Afghan War Troops

Friday, 13 Nov 2009 08:32 AM

 

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LONDON — British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said Friday he was confident of persuading Afghanistan war allies to contribute to an extra 5,000 troops on top of a likely US surge.

Brown, under fire at home as the British death toll mounts, told BBC radio he was sending envoys to fellow European countries in a bid to convince them to share the burden.

The premier said he was confident that US President Barack Obama would largely accept the call from General Stanley McChrystal, who commands international forces in Afghanistan, for tens of thousands more US troops.

But in addition, "we need our other NATO allies to help," Brown said.

"We can probably get another 5,000 forces into Afghanistan from that NATO and outside NATO group, and we'll be part of that.

"I have taken the responsibility of asking others in Europe -- and outside Europe actually -- if they will back this strategy, which is partnering the Afghan forces, mentoring the Afghan forces," he added.

"I believe I can persuade countries who said only a few weeks ago they would send no more troops to Afghanistan, that if we are training the Afghan forces and partnering, and if there is a way forward that allows troops to come home over time, it's right for them to contribute troops as well, and so burden-sharing will happen."

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