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 You are in: Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs: Press Relations Office > Press Releases (Other) > 2006 > January
Fact Sheet
Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
January 31, 2006


North Atlantic Treaty Organization-International Security Assistance Force

Operating under a mandate from the United Nations Security Council, the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) has been engaged in Afghanistan since August 2003.

Working alongside Afghan security forces, ISAF currently commands security and stabilization operations in the northern and western provinces, and plans to assume command of security and stabilization operations in the southern region in 2006.

ISAF’s mandate is to assist the Afghan government in maintaining security so that Afghan authorities, as well as the personnel of the United Nations and other international civilian agencies engaged in reconstruction and humanitarian efforts, can operate in a secure environment, and to provide security assistance for the performance of other reconstruction tasks.

  • Over 9,000 troops from 36 nations participate in ISAF. Among their assignments, these troops have responsibility for nine Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs): Mazar-e Sharif (led by the United Kingdom), Maimana (Norway), Konduz and Feyzabad (Germany), Pol-e Khumri (the Netherlands), Herat (Italy), Qal-eh ye Now (Spain), Chaghcharan (Lithuania) and Farah (United States).
  • For the 2004 Presidential election and the 2005 National Assembly and Provincial Council elections, ISAF cooperated with Afghan and Coalition forces deployed for Operation Enduring Freedom to provide security for the elections. ISAF also supports training of the Afghan National Army and police, as well as counter-narcotics efforts. It has provided emergency humanitarian and disaster assistance in Afghanistan.
  • As a member of NATO the United States assigns troops to support ISAF, in addition to Operation Enduring Freedom Coalition operations.

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Released on January 31, 2006

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