Berlin to Start Afghan Troop Pull-Out in Februaryger
BERLIN - Germany, which has over 5,000 troops in Afghanistan, will withdraw 200 soldiers at the start of February, a German weekly reported Dec. 11.
Germany plans to whittle its forces in Afghanistan to 4,900 next year against 5,350 at present. The NATO-led forces are due to be pulled out in 2014.
Berlin is drawing up its withdrawal plans, which will start on Feb. 1 and involve 200 troops, Bild am Sonntag said, without naming any sources.
Germany, which has the third-biggest force in Afghanistan behind the United States and Britain, said at the start of the year that it aimed to begin pulling its military forces out, eyeing 2014 for complete withdrawal.
Polls have shown the mission, the first major Bundeswehr deployment outside of Europe since World War II, has been consistently unpopular in the country.