Today DoD provided Congress with a report on “Enhancing Security and Stability in Afghanistan” in accordance with Section 1225 of the Carl Levin and Howard P. “Buck” McKeon National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2015 (Public Law 113-291). This report addresses developments from June 1- Nov. 30.
The Taliban-led insurgency continue to present a formidable threat, as seen in both Helmand and Kunduz provinces, but the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) have proven their willingness to fight and their ability to thwart the insurgency’s efforts to achieve its strategic objectives. During the reporting period, the RS mission helped the ANDSF improve their capabilities in key areas such as intelligence, aviation, and sustainment.
In order to preserve hard-fought gains and help the ANDSF continue to develop, on Oct. 15 President Obama announced that U.S. forces will maintain their current posture of up to 9,800 military personnel through most of 2016. By the end of 2016, rather than drawdown to a Kabul-only presence, the United States will maintain 5,500 military personnel in Kabul and Bagram, in addition to a limited presence in the south and east. At the Dec. 1 NATO Foreign Ministers meeting, NATO allies and Resolute Support operational partners agreed to sustain the Resolute Support presence, in Afghanistan for 2016.
Although considerable challenges remain, the Department of Defense remains committed to the ANDSF and confident that the ANDSF has the capabilities, capacities, and morale to set the conditions for a secure Afghanistan.
The report is posted at http://www.defense.gov/Portals/1/Documents/pubs/1225_Report_Dec_2015_-_Final_20151210.pdf
Release No: NR-469-15
December 15, 2015