In a briefing on June 19, Caldwell said the leadership training program
has already begun. He said the Turkish effort has been taking place in Camp
Gazi in the Afghan capital of Kabul.
Under U.S. pressure, Turkey has deployed nearly 2,000 military and
security personnel in Afghanistan. The Turkish contingent has helped train
the Army and police as well as operate a military hospital in Kabul.
Caldwell, who held three days of talks with Turkish commanders and
officials in mid-June, said Ankara could be asked to expand its training
program in Afghanistan. He said one option was that Turkey would instruct
and mentor border police forces. Some of the courses have been given by U.S.
"We asked whether Turkey would like to take over the border police
training facility in Shibirgan [in northern Afghanistan]," Caldwell said.
"We have four training centers in Afghanistan for border police and we are
asking [the Turks] if they would take over the one in Shibirgan."
Another NATO option would send 1,000 Afghan cadets for a year-long
training program in Turkey. Officials said the government of Prime Minister
Recep Erdogan has agreed to the proposal.
The Turkish military training has focused on 12-week courses in an
effort to transform up to 2,000 raw recruits into non-commissioned officers.
On June 19, 400 Afghans began a training course directed by Turkey at Camp
"Our biggest challenge today is we haven't finished growing the police
force," Caldwell said. "What Turkish trainers do is that they bring