Bosnia Sends First Combat Unit to Afghanistan

Bosnia's parliament on Thursday backed the deployment of the country's first combat unit to Afghanistan, where it already has a small contingent of soldiers tasked with providing security for the NATO force there.

A total of 26 members of Bosnia-Hercegovina's military police will leave for Afghanistan to serve "for a period of 10 months" with the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), a defence ministry spokeswoman told AFP.

"They will join US troops in Kandahar and will be engaged in escort operations," spokeswoman Uma Sinanovic added, without giving the date for their dispatch.

Bosnia, which hopes to join NATO, already has some 55 soldiers and officers serving with NATO's international force.

Around 100,000 US-led NATO troops are presently fighting a decade-long Taliban insurgency in Afghanistan.

War-weary international forces are seeking to hand control of security to Afghan forces and withdraw their combat troops by the end of 2014.

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