Latvia’s Parliament extends participation of Latvian National Armed Forces in Afghanistan
Last week Latvia’s Parliament extended the participation of Latvia’s National Armed Forces in the NATO-led operation in Afghanistan for another year – until October 13, 2007. The decision falls in line with UN Security Council resolution No. 1707 which extends NATO’s International Security Assistance Force until the same date. The Latvian contingent is expected to include around 56 soldiers who will serve in 6- month rotation periods.
Recent surveys show that 57.1% of Latvia’s population supports NATO involvement in international peace-keeping operations. There is also significant support for the participation of Latvian troops in international peace-keeping operations. 37.6% of those surveyed believe that the participation of Latvian soldiers in these activities helps develops their professional skills. 29.2% of the respondents considered that it was Latvia's obligation as an ally to participate in similar operations, whereas 20.9% expressed the view that participation by Latvian troops in international peace-keeping operations would increase Latvia's security. Only 17.7% of respondents considered that such participation was unnecessary.