An Afghan soldier on operations in Ghazni province in December 2016. Sources with the country's NATO-led 'Resolute Support' mission have expressed optimism over the current capabilities of the ANDSF compared with previous years. Source: Xinhua/PA Images
IHS Jane's 360: NATO prepares for Taliban spring campaign, with focus on south
* The NATO-led 'Resolute Support' mission in Afghanistan is expecting the Taliban's spring offensive to focus on the south
* This year, however, there are raised expectations regarding the capabilities of the ANDSF
As in past years, coalition forces in Afghanistan expect a substantial spike in spring fighting from the country's Taliban insurgency in 2017, particularly in the latter's southern stronghold regions. Despite the continuing deadly attacks on Kabul and other areas, NATO said the Afghan National Defence and Security Forces (ANDSF) are better prepared compared with just four months ago to confront the insurgents.
"The Taliban will typically kick off [their insurgency campaign] in mid-April, so the fighting will pick up soon," Brigadier General Charles Cleveland, spokesman for the NATO-led 'Resolute Support' mission in Afghanistan, told reporters in Brussels by video conference from Kabul on 1 March.
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