#AceWorldNews – AFGHANISTAN – Nov.24 – Britain withdrew its last military forces from southern Afghanistan on Monday, after 13 years of fighting, AFP said.
A ceremony at Kandahar airfield marked the departure of remaining Royal Air Force personnel as the final British base was handed over to Afghan forces in October. Since 2001, Britain has suffered 453 military deaths during operations in some of the most violent parts of Afghanistan.
Much of the British fighting took place in neighbouring Helmand province.
It still remains a Taliban insurgent stronghold and a centre of opium poppy cultivation.
#AceWorldNews – AFGHANISTAN – Nov.23 – Following closely on from my post about Germany increasing their troops in Afghanistan beyond 2014.
The parliament of Afghanistan approved an agreement that allows troops of the NATO-led coalition to say in the country beyond 2014. The agreement was suspended in mid-air for months, as former President Hamid Karzai refused to sign it during his term.
The new agreement, ratified Sunday, allows the ISAF to maintain a total of 12,000 troops in Afghanistan next year. After a 152-5 vote, Nazifullah Salarzai, spokesman for Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, said the foreign troops will “train, advise and assist Afghan security forces.”
“Afghan forces are responsible for the security and defense of the Afghan people, and in the fight against international terrorism and training of our national security forces we count on the support and assistance of our international partners,” he said, AP reported.
#AceNewsServices – MOSUL – Nov.18 – An Iraqi military operation to liberate Mosul from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) will be launched at the start of the new year, Iraq’s Nineveh governorate council has announced.
Speaking to Asharq Al-Awsat, council member Ghazwan Hamid said around 80,000 troops will be involved in the offensive, and that preparations for the operation were already under-way.
Iraqi soldiers who fled their posts in Mosul upon the city’s capture by ISIS back in June will be reintroduced into the Iraqi Army as part of the operation, Hamid said.
Members of the Nineveh police force will also be involved, as will fighters from the Kurdish Peshmerga, “who will be contributing to the operation by capturing the Nineveh plains area [which borders the northern and eastern regions of Mosul], and then surrounding the city from every direction.”
Training camps for the operation have now been set up in the Kurdistan region, Hamid said, adding that many of those currently being trained were previously members of the Iraqi armed forces.
“As for the rest, they comprise volunteers and members of Nineveh’s police force, all of whom need intense training in order to ready them for the upcoming battle,” he said.
Mosul is the Nineveh governorate’s capital city.
#AceNewsServices – WEST AFRICA(Burkina Faso) – Political forces in the West African nation of Burkina Faso agreed on a framework for a transitional government following talks between opposition parties, the military, religious leaders, and civil society groups.
The decision comes two weeks after President Blaise Compaore was ousted in a military coup.
The transitional government will be tasked with bringing the country back to civilian rule and getting it ready for elections.
Compaore was forced to resign on October 31 following mass protests against a move to change the constitution in order to extend his long-standing leadership.
“Today was the day of compromise,” Herve Kam, a member of the Balai Citoyen civil society group, said. “Both soldiers and civilians agree on a civilian transition. The institutions of the transition will be led by civilians.”
RT – AFP – AP – Nigerian Media
#AceWorldNews says that according to latest reports a group described as Islamist militants attacked security forces in an ambush near the border with Algeria, killing four people, Tunisia’s interior ministry said on Sunday, according to reports by Reuters and AP.
The ministry statement said the militants opened fire on a vehicle driving along a road in the north-west of the country, killing a prison official, a civilian and wounding two others.
The band then attacked security officials who arrived to investigate the incident, killing two members of the National Guard and wounding two others.
The Islamist militants were disguised as security officials and had stolen weapons and a vehicle, according to the state news agency TAP.
The report did not name any group as being responsible for the attack.