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Afghanistan war: Brown's call signals NATO ready to boost forces

Britain's Gordon Brown on Friday called on NATO countries to send 5,000 more troops for Afghanistan war. It's one sign that NATO may be willing to commit more forces to that war than expected.

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British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, one of President Obama's strongest allies in the Afghanistan war, turned up the heat on NATO allies Friday, saying he expects them to deploy as many as 5,000 additional forces.

His comments come among some other indications that NATO may be willing to contribute more troops to Afghanistan than previously expected.

Mr. Brown said Friday he is sending envoys to several allied nations to persuade them to reaffirm their commitment to the eight-year war by deploying more troops. His comments on BBC Radio, coming weeks before Mr. Obama is expected to announce his plans, could help reinvigorate NATO commitment to Afghanistan.

"I believe I can persuade countries, who said only a few weeks ago they would send no more troops to Afghanistan, that if we are training Afghan forces and partnering, and if there is a way forward that allows troops to come home over time, it's right for them to contribute troops as well," Brown said, adding, "And so burden-sharing will happen."

There are 58,000 US troops and 39,000 allied forces in Afghanistan. Britain has the second-largest force there after the US, with 9,000 troops.


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