Jordan trained 2,500 Afghan special forces: minister

13-05-2010 12:00 AM

Ammon News - AMMAN (AFP) — Jordan said on Wednesday it has trained 2,500 members of Afghanistan's special forces but added that it was still studying a request from NATO to train members of the Afghan police.

"Jordan has trained 2,500 members of the Afghan special forces. This was in the past. The group has completed its training and there are no trainees now," Information Minister Nabil Sharif told a news conference.

A Jordanian military source told AFP the training took place three years ago but declined to give details.

Asked about training for the Afghan police, Sharif said: "The kingdom hasn't yet decided on NATO's request."

Jordan announced it had been asked to conduct the training after a visit to Amman in March by NATO secretary general Anders Fogh Rasmussen.

Jordan's special forces chief Brigadier Ali Jaradat has said in published remarks that 1,500 servicemen, including anti-terror forces, from Afghanistan and Iraq have received training at the 200-million-dollar King Abdullah II Special Operations Training Centre, which was inaugurated in May last year.

"Troops from most of the Arab countries and other states have received training at the centre," he was quoted as saying.

"The Americans and Europeans took part ... Most of the troops serving in Afghanistan received training at the centre before they went there."

Jordan acknowledged it had a counterterrorism role in Afghanistan after the death in a January suicide bombing of a senior intelligence officer, who was also a member of the royal family.

His death along with seven US Central Intelligence Agency personnel spotlighted for the first time Jordan's role in the international coalition in the war-hit country.

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