Rome: The withdrawal of Italian troops from Afghanistan is completed, Italian Defense Minister Lorenzo Guerini said Wednesday.
"Last night, the Italian mission in Afghanistan was officially completed. The safe return of the last serviceman ended the substantial logistical and operational efforts, performed with punctuality by our armed forces," the defense minister said.
Guerini added that the completion of the military mission does not mean the end of the efforts of the international community, in particular those of Italy, for Afghanistan. They will go on but in different forms - for example, by "boosting cooperation in the development and support of the Afghan republican institutions," he said.
In April, the United States announced that its troops will be withdrawn from Afghanistan by September 11, in commemoration of 20th anniversary of 9/11 attacks. NATO allies, including Italy, backed the initiative and started to pull their Afghan contingents out starting May 1. (UNI)