Beginning of International Operation
The operation ENDURING FREEDOM is part of antiterrorist campaign and military response to the events of 11 September 2001.
On 7 October 2001, after Taliban refused to turn over Osama bin Laden, the UN Security Council led by the USA launched a series of air strikes seeking to destroy training camps, infrastructure objects and concentration centres of al-Qaeda and Taliban terrorists.
On 5 December the Bonn Agreement was signed. The main factions of Afghanistan agreed on forming coalition government and accepted the establishment of International Security Assistance Force (ISAF).
On 12-13 November 2001 the coalition forces together with the Northern Alliance took Kabul after mass withdrawal of Taliban forces.
On 20 December the UN Security Council passed Resolution 1386 on establishment of International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan in order to assist the Afghan Interim Authority in maintenance of security in Kabul and its surrounding areas.
On 2 May 2003 the USA Secretary of Defence Donald H. Rumsfeld declared ending of active actions and beginning of stabilization and restoration process in Afghanistan.
On 11 August 2003 NATO officially took over the command of ISAF operation.
On 13 October 2003 the UN Security Council passed Resolution 1510 on execution of ISAF tasks outside Kabul.
On 24 October 2003 the process of disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of former Afghanistan security forces started.
On 6 December 2003 the USA military announced starting a wide range operation in order to completely destroy the remainder of al-Qaeda and Taliban forces.
Participation of Lithuanian troops in Afghanistan operation
Lithuania has been participating in international operations in Afghanistan since 2002. In 2002 – 2006 Lithuania participated in the USA led antiterrorist operation “Enduring Freedom”.
In June 2005 Lithuania undertook obligation to lead ISAF PRT in Western Afghanistan Ghowr province. On 30 June 2005 by Resolution No 732 of the Government of the Republic of Lithuania the Special Mission of the Republic of Lithuania for coordinating implementation of PRT civilian tasks was established.
The task of Provincial Reconstruction Team is participation of Lithuanian operational forces in NATO-led ISAF operations in Afghanistan Ghowr province in order to assist Afghanistan government in creating safe and stable environment, and enable Afghanistan government to develop security structures capable of maintaining security independently without assistance of international forces.
Lithuanian Special Forces Squadron carries out the ISAF mission in Kandaghar province in the south of Afghanistan. Lithuanian staff officers also serve in ISAF operational headquarters. Since February 2009 the troops of National Support Element ensuring the logistical provision to Lithuanian military and civilian personnel have been deployed to Afghanistan.
Since November 2010 the Police Operational Mentor and Liaison Team (POMLT) has started its activities in Ghor province. Its task is to mentor, advise and otherwise contribute to the preparation of Afghanistan National Police Forces to carry out the assigned tasks. POMLT comprises the troops of Lithuanian Military Police, officials of Public Security Service under the Ministry of Interior of the Republic of Lithuania and troops of Pennsylvania National Guard.
In the beginning of 2011 Lithuanian-led multinational Air Mentor Team was deployed to Afghanistan to assist in training the troops of Afghan National Army Air Corps Aviation Unit. The Air Mentor Team includes the representatives of Lithuanian Air Force, Latvia, Belgium and Ukraine.
Lithuanian-led Ghor Provincial Reconstruction Team in Afghanistan: Mission Accomplished
By formally handing over the responsibility for security of the province of Ghor to the Afghanistan National Security Force is August 2013, Lithuania concluded its first and largest multinational commitment thus far – successfully leading for more than 8 years, a Provincial Reconstruction Team under the auspices of the NATO International Security Assistance Force. It was a joint civilian-military project, with Lithuania, in partnership with other foreign countries, assisting the Government of Afghanistan to expand its authority in the province, ensure security, provide favourable conditions for reconstruction and in the end allow Afghanistan to manage its own security effectively.