Germany Extends Afghanistan Mission

18 November 2009 (Last Updated November 18th, 2009 18:30)

The German Army will continue its military mission in Afghanistan for another year following the German Government's decision to extend the current mandate past its 13 December expiry date. The German Parliament is yet to vote on the decision but little resistance is expected against Germ

The German Army will continue its military mission in Afghanistan for another year following the German Government's decision to extend the current mandate past its 13 December expiry date.

The German Parliament is yet to vote on the decision but little resistance is expected against German Chancellor Angela Merkel's majority coalition.

Over 4,000 German soldiers have been deployed in the north of Afghanistan and 30 soldiers have died as part of the country's international commitment to help maintain peace and security in the world.

The government also wants to begin building a framework for the withdrawal of its forces from Afghanistan.

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said that they didn't want Afghanistan to be a mission that lasts for ever and ever.

"We want a responsible handover in Afghanistan itself." he said.

The German Government also extended two other military missions, including the mission to fight piracy off the coast of Africa for one year, and the mission to patrol the Lebanese coastline until June 2010.