Turkey extends mission in Afghanistan
Turkish Foreign Ministry has announced that it will extend its command of NATO soldiers in the war-torn country of Afghanistan by one more year, Press TV reported.
"We have decided to extend our leadership of the Kabul Regional Command for one more year from November 1, 2010," the Turkish ministry said in a statement on Monday.
The government in Ankara was asked to extend its command due to the success of the Turkish military and its close communications with the Afghans, the statement added.
The announcement of the mission extension came ahead of an official visit by NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen to Turkey on Wednesday.
Turkey has sent troops to Afghanistan since the start of the US-led invasion of the country in 2001 and has assumed command of NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), twice -- in 2002 and 2005. It also took over NATO's Kabul Regional Command mission for eight months in 2007.
Turkey increased the number of its soldiers in the country to 1,800 after it assumed command of the Kabul Regional Command for one year in 2009.