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General says US military will begin sending special advisory teams to Afghanistan this year
WASHINGTON (AP) ' The No. 2 U.S. commander in Afghanistan says the U.S. military will begin sending advisory teams this year to help Afghan combat forces as they take a more prominent role in fighting the Taliban insurgency.
The plan as described by Lt. Gen. Curtis Scaparrotti is for U.S. and other international troops to begin stepping back from their leading role, so that responsibility for the war is fully in Afghan hands by the end of 2014.
Scaparrotti is in charge of day-to-day military operations in Afghanistan as commander of the International Security Assistance Force Joint Command.
He said he is pushing to get more Afghan units into the lead so there is enough time ' before the end of 2014 ' to improve their performance.