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Towards transition: prospects for progress in Afghanistan during 2011

By Raspal Khosa

As Afghanistan pitches headlong into yet another fighting season, the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force and the Afghan Government must consolidate hard-won security gains made in key districts in southern Afghanistan over the previous six months.

The coalition must, therefore, advance all lines of operation including the more challenging areas of governance and development.

This will require committed ISAF members like Australia to provide additional civilian personnel—including police trainers—with the requisite skills to build Afghan Government institutional capacity and facilitate socio-economic development.

Only through maintaining the sense of urgency that was created over the past six months can the coalition shift from stabilisation to the 2014 goal of irreversible transition to Afghan Government responsibility for securing its own territory.