NATO backs Afghan forces with medical supplies

The NATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA) has operated several chartered flights to Afghanistan, transporting hundreds of tonnes of pharmaceutical supplies to the Afghan national army and police.

The consisted of pain relievers, vitamins, antibiotic pills and ointments, polio vaccine, hand sanitiser, IV fluids and other critical medicines.

In a statement on Saturday, NATO hoped the supplies would help Afghan forces improve their standard of care and reduce the risk of harm and infection to service personnel.

Additional flights will be operated through the end of the year — an effort funded by the NATO-run Afghan National Army (ANA) Trust Fund as part of the extensive support provided by the Support and Procurement Agency.

The support is sent to the Combined Security Transition Command in Afghanistan (CSTC-A), which operates within the framework of the Resolute Support Mission.

Specific projects focus on strengthening the Afghan security forces,, including in the domains of logistics, organisation, education and medicine.

The Afghan National Army Trust Fund represents one of three funding streams used by the international community to channel its financial support to Afghanistan’s security forces.

According to the statement, the other two are the Law and Order Trust Fund for Afghanistan (LOTFA), administered by the United Nations Development Programme, and the United States Afghanistan Security Forces Fund (ASFF).

LOTFA is used to pay the salaries of police and corrections personnel and to build the capacity of the Afghan Ministry of the Interior and the police. The ASFF pays for equipping and running Afghanistan’s security forces, as well as facility and infrastructure repair, renovation and construction.

Other current projects financed through the Afghan National Army Trust Fund include hundreds of millions of dollars for power transmission and substantial projects for counter-improvised explosive devices equipment and training, helicopter repair, and security systems enhanced by video surveillance.

These projects are implemented through various delivering agencies – including the NATO Support and Procurement Agency, the United States Army Corps of Engineers, and the United Nations Office of Project Services.

As of mid-November 2020, total contributions made to the Trust Fund since its establishment in 2007 amount to over 3.2 billion U.S. dollars.

The ANA Trust Fund is open for contributions by the broader international community, the statement said.

At their recent meeting in early December, NATO Foreign Ministers reaffirmed their strong commitment to the Resolute Support Mission.

They also reaffirmed their commitment to support the financial sustainment of the Afghan security forces through 2024 and the ongoing efforts towards lasting peace and security in Afghanistan, through an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process.

The NATO Support and Procurement Agency is NATO’s main services provider, delivering a broad spectrum of integrated capabilities for the Alliance, its member nations and partners.

The agency brings together NATO’s logistics support and procurement activities, providing effective and cost-efficient multinational support solutions. NSPA is a customer-funded agency, operating on a “no profit – no loss” basis.