As Operation TORAL, the UK’s contribution to NATO Resolute Support, draws to a close, a small number of UK military personnel will temporarily remain to support the transition to a new phase of UK Government support to Afghanistan.
Operation TORAL has been the UK’s mission in Afghanistan since the end of UK combat operations in 2015. In line with the orderly and coordinated withdrawal of NATO Forces which began on 1 May, the Prime Minister confirmed earlier today that the UK has now withdrawn the majority of our personnel from the country.
A number of troops will remain to offer diplomatic assurance to the international community in Kabul as we transition to the end of the NATO mission. This is consistent with the continued diplomatic presence and retaining a bi-lateral relationship with Afghanistan.
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said:
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has confirmed that the majority of UK personnel have now withdrawn from Afghanistan.
Mr Johnson told the Commons on Thursday:
Since British forces entered Afghanistan in 2001, 457 personnel have been killed, with more sustaining life changing injuries. The country owes them a huge debt of gratitude and their sacrifice must never be forgotten.
British troops, alongside NATO allies, have helped to train 5,000 Afghan Security Forces cadets, including 330 women, at the Afghan National Army Officer Academy which was modelled on the British Army’s Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, earning the nickname ‘Sandhurst in the Sand.’
Over 150,000 UK personnel have served in the war-torn country and their efforts have not been in vain.
Source: WO2 Leigh Gray / MOD