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Afghan Defense Ministry Rejects U.S. Audit Results On Bases

A joint Afghan-NATO base in Kandahar (file photo)
KABUL -- Afghanistan’s Defense Ministry has rejected a U.S. government audit warning that Afghan security forces are ill-prepared to maintain NATO-built bases on their own beyond 2014.

Afghan Defense Ministry spokesman Zahir Azimi told RFE/RL that many of the military bases constructed by NATO troops will be converted to civilian facilities such as schools and hospitals, while some will be abandoned.

Azimi added that many bases will continue to serve military purposes.

Azimi rejected the recently published audit by the U.S. Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR). It said Afghan forces don't have enough technical skills to operate critical facilities at NATO bases, like water supply and power generation.

NATO combat troops are scheduled to leave Afghanistan by the end of 2014.

With reporting by "Foreign Policy"