David Cameron has declared mission accomplished in Afghanistan after 12 years of British involvement in the conflict, despite fears of a surge of violence from the Taliban around next year’s elections.

The prime minister made the bold claim as he visited Camp Bastion, the British base in Helmand province, almost exactly a year before all UK fighting troops are due to be withdrawn from the country.

Almost 6,000 men and women are still serving in Afghanistan in a war that has cost 646 British lives so far.

Asked whether they were coming home with mission accomplished, Cameron said: “Yes I think they do. I think they can come home with their heads held high. You know, we will not leave behind a perfect country or a perfect democracy.

“You have to remember that Afghanistan is an extremely poor country with a very, very troubled history but I think the purpose of our mission was always to build an Afghanistan and Afghan security forces that were capable of maintaining a basic level of security so this country never again became a haven for terrorist training camps.

“That has been the most important part of the mission … The absolute driving part of the mission is the basic level of security so that it doesn’t become a haven for terror… see more

source: Guardian UK