Communications minister Malcolm Turnbull speaks to the media at Parliament House, Canberra Thursday, 5 June, 2014.
Communications minister Malcolm Turnbull speaks to the media at Parliament House, Canberra Thursday, 5 June, 2014. AAP Image - Gary Schafer

Turnbull visits Afghanistan, promises 20 extra soldiers

PRIME Minister Malcolm Turnbull has committed an extra 20 troops to Australia's mission training Afghani troops, during a brief visit to the country after a similar stop-over in Iraq.

Mr Turnbull also met with Afghan President Dr Ashraf Ghani, and Dr Ghani accepted his invitation to visit Australia later this year.

The Prime Minister also met with troops, aid workers and protection officers at Qarga, the Afghan national army's officer training academy.

He told troops they were making a "real effort" to help Afghanistan "stand on its own two feet and maintain its own security".

It comes following what some analysts have called one of the bloodiest years in Afghanistan, with a the Taliban killing an estimated 16,000 soldiers and police officers.

The trip precedes Mr Turnbull's planned visit to the United States, where talks will focus on national security and trade this week.


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