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France: No More Combat Troops for Afghanistan

Minister says France will consider sending extra trainers
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 29, 2010 2:09 AM CST
France: No More Combat Troops for Afghanistan
French President Nicolas Sarkozy has made his opposition to the Afghanistan troop surge clear.   (AP Photo/Claude Paris, Pool)

(Newser) – The 7,000 reinforcements NATO has promised to send to Afghanistan along with the American surge won't be coming from France. French officials have ruled out sending more combat troops to the country but will consider sending more trainers for Afghanistan's army and police, Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner told CNN after a London summit.

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"No more fighters. We are in charge. We don't want to send more troops to fight," Kouchner said. France currently has some 3,500 troops in Afghanistan. The minister, asked about Gen. Stanley McChrystal's surge strategy, said French officials are "concerned by the position of the Afghan people and the government, the legitimate government of Afghanistan." He noted that Hamid Karzai's government is adopting a different approach toward the Taliban with its "pay for peace" plan. (Read more France stories.)

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