Polish ISAF mission wraps up in Afghanistan
PR dla Zagranicy
Poland officially completed its NATO-led ISAF mission in Afghanistan, Thursday, following a thirteen year presence in the country.
Photo: Warrant Officer I Class Waldemar Młynarczyk, Combat Camera DOSZ RP
Polish soldiers at the base in Bagram handed over their duties to their colleagues who are to undertake preparations ahead of a smaller NATO-led mission, named Resolute Support, which is to number some 12,000 troops including 150 Poles.
During the closing ceremony The commanding officer of the Polish mission, Colonel Adam Slodczyk reviewed the activities over the past six months, highlighting the shipping of 1.5 thousand tons of equipment back to Poland.
“Equipment which was not worth transporting [back to Poland] was processed at the Bagram base, including over 20 vehicles and over 360 tons of waste,” Slodczyk said, adding that Polish forces “donated items worth almost 300,000 zloty (80,000 euro) to Afghan humanitarian aid organisations”.
Some 28,000 personnel, both civilian and military, have passed through the Polish base at Bagram over the past 13 years. At its peak, the base accommodated some 2,600 people.
The Polish contingent was in Afghanistan as part of the NATO-led ISAF mission. During their presence there, Poles fought against the Taliban, helped rebuild the Ghazni province where Bagram is located, and trained some 11,000 Afghan soldiers and policemen. Some 130 tons in humanitarian aid was also distributed from the camp.
Over the course of Poland’s presence in Afghanistan, 45 soldiers died while 361 were injured. In material terms, the total cost of the Polish mission in Afghanistan is estimated at some 6 billion zloty (around 1.5 billion euro). (jb)