The Head of National Defence, General Gerard Van Caelenberge has not formally excluded that Belgian soldiers are still present in Kunduz in northern Afghanistan in a year. Much will depend on the progress of the announced departure of the German military, he said Friday during a visit to the year-end Belgian troops in cee countries. The operation of the Belgian F-16 in Kandahar "will remain a very important mission," he added.
General is currently conducting a tour of Belgian forces deployed in Afghanistan to support them in this time of Christmas season spent away from their families. Friday, CHOD visited bases in Mazar-e-Sharif and Kandahar. On Saturday, he will Kunduz, where 125 Belgians form a battalion of the Afghan army. They will be there still next year? General Van Caelenberge excludes nothing for hours. Everything will depend on the progress of the announced departure of the German military, which controls operations in the region of Kunduz and protect the Belgianmilitary. Defence boss does not want to assume the consequences for Belgium this withdrawal. "It is difficult to say when we leave (Kunduz)." However, he recognized that departure of the Germans have a significant impact for the Belgians. "We have two options: either we stop we, or we will organize ourselves our protection." (KNS)