isaf mission

Compromise on Afghanistan force

Updated 1:48 PM

The Swedish center-right government has reached agreement with the two largest opposition parties on the future of the Swedish forces in Afghanistan.

The government is due to present a bill on the extension of the force Thursday.

The compromise was presented at a joint press conference Monday afternoon. Social Democrat leader Mona Sahlin and Peter Eriksson, one of the two co-spokespersons for the Greens, joined Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt to announce the agreement. 

Sweden currently has around 500 soldiers serving with the Isaf force. Five so far have died in combat. Under the agreement, a reduction in the size of the force would begin in 2012, with the hope of a complete phase-out by 2014.

The Left party has been most adamant about bringing home the 500 Swedish Isaf soldiers as soon as possible. Party leader Lars Ohly expressed his disappointment that the Social Democrat and Green parties abandoned the joint position on the issue they adopted with the Left before September’s election loss.