'UK to deploy up to 4,000 troops in Afghanistan'
Britain plans to order up to 4,000 of its toughest troops to start deploying in Afghanistan from April or May.Updated: Jan 28, 2006 19:01 IST
Britain plans to order up to 4,000 of its toughest troops to start deploying in Afghanistan from April or May, the
tabloid reported on Wednesday.
A spokesman for the Ministry of Defence was not immediately available to comment on the story.
Defence Secretary John Reid on Thursday will inform soldiers from the 16 Air Assault Brigade and the Parachute Regiment of their mission to Helmand province, The Sun said, quoting an unnamed "senior government figure".
"There is no doubt this will be a dangerous exercise. But it is a vital mission for Britain to lead," the source told the tabloid.
"Our forces will be robustly armed in case they come into contact with enemy forces."
The British deployment is to spearhead a NATO "enabling force" to help the Afghan government and take over from US units in the area, The Sun said.
It noted, however, that London's decision to send its tough paratroopers underlines the potential dangers involved.
First Published: Jan 25, 2006 10:17 IST