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Hundreds of French troops deploy to Afghanistan

Thursday, August 07, 2008

KABUL, Afghanistan —  NATO says that hundreds of French troops have been deployed to train and mentor Afghan security forces in southern Afghanistan.

NATO says the troops traveled in 94 vehicles from Kandahar to Uruzgan province on Wednesday.

It says the deployment was one of the largest ground military convoys in southern Afghanistan in years.

The unit will provide training and support to Afghan army infantry battalions. NATO did not provide the exact number of troops deployed.

Taliban fighters have frequently clashed with foreign and Afghan troops in Uruzgan.

NATO commanders and leaders have repeatedly requested more trainers for the fledgling Afghan National Army and police, which are the centerpiece of their counterinsurgency strategy.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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