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Germany offers 600-800 soldiers for training mission in Afghanistan after combat troops leave

Germany has offered to provide 600-800 soldiers for a NATO training mission in Afghanistan after U.S. and other foreign combat troops leave the country by the end of next year.

Defense Minister Thomas de Maiziere said the German troops would likely be stationed in Kabul and the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif for a two-year period starting in 2015.

The final decision must be taken by the next German government following national elections in September, but polls show Chancellor Angela Merkel's center-right coalition will be the likely winner.

Germany currently has about 4,170 troops in Afghanistan, mostly in the north.

The U.S. is expected to keep between 9,000 and 10,000 in Afghanistan as a residual force after 2014, but no final decision has been made.