US commends India’s support to Afghanistan

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US commander General John Nicholson applauds India for assisting Afghan forces (File photo)
US commander General John Nicholson applauds India for assisting Afghan forces (File photo)

While welcoming India’s support to the war-torn region, the top US commander in Afghanistan wants India to provide more helicopters to the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF).

General Nicholson, who is on his official visit to New Delhi, appreciated India for providing “enoromously valuable” support in firming up Afghan security forces.

He also said that the Afghan forces need more aircrafts. “The Afghan air force needs to expand. We are concerned about making it sustainable; so that they can maintain the aircraft, get their parts in time, etc.”

According to media reports, these remarks by the General came as the Army chief General Qadam Shah Shahim is expected to visit India to meet Indian officials and hand over a revised wish list to the Indian authorities.

“The tremendous cooperation India has made in the human capital of Afghan security forces is the one contribution that is going to be enduring,” he said while referring to the Indian training provided to the  Afghan forces.

India supplied Mi-25 gunship helicopters to Afghanistan last year, the move which was much appreciated by General Nicholson.

The U.S. favours India for providing greater security assistance to Afghanistan, the General said while welcoming India’s contributions of Mi-25 gunships. He also said that there is an immediate need for more helicopters.