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ZAGREB, 22 March 2011

The Republic of Croatia welcomes the decision by President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai for the Afghan institutions to gradually assume the leading role in the security of their country.

The beginning of the transition is a clear indication that the strategy in Afghanistan is successful and that the efforts yield the results. The Republic of Croatia, with its contribution to the international engagement, is part of that success.

The transition does not equate to the instantaneous withdrawal of the international forces from Afghanistan, however it is to be expected that the international military presence would gradually diminish. Transition is a process that will require continued assistance to the Afghan forces so that they could develop their own capabilities so to make the security of their country sustainable and permanent.

The Republic of Croatia, participating in the ISAF mission, strongly supports the transition process through training the Afghan security forces. The bulk of the Croatian contingent is dedicated exclusively to the training the Afghan army and police. The Republic of Croatia will continue to strive for its engagement to be focused as much as possible to this crucial area.

The ISAF proves the long-standing commitment of the international community and its unity in setting up a sustainable security and stability of Afghanistan.

The goal of the Afghan Government is to assume the leading role for the security throughout its territory by the end of 2014. This ambition is supported by the Republic of Croatia as a NATO member and ISAF participant.



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