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New Zealand mulls Afghan special forces plan: PM

New Zealand New Zealand (zē`lənd), island country (2005 est. pop. 4,035,000), 104,454 sq mi (270,534 sq km), in the S Pacific Ocean, over 1,000 mi (1,600 km) SE of Australia. The capital is Wellington; the largest city and leading port is Auckland.  is considering recommitting special forces to the escalating war against the Taliban in Afghanistan, Prime Minister John Key said Monday.

New Zealand Special Air Service (SAS (1) (SAS Institute Inc., Cary, NC, A software company that specializes in data warehousing and decision support software based on the SAS System. Founded in 1976, SAS is one of the world's largest privately held software companies. See SAS System. ) troops have been deployed three times in Afghanistan, the last time in 2006, and other Western countries have increased their military commitment as fighting escalates.

Key told Television New Zealand that a review of New Zealand's commitment in Afghanistan -- currently 140 personnel doing reconstruction work in Bamiyan province -- is likely to be completed in August.

Any decision on whether to employ the SAS troops was "delicate," he said.

"On one hand I don't want to put New Zealand troops in the form of the SAS in harm's way harm's way
A risky position; danger: a place for the children that is out of harm's way; ships that sail into harm's way. 
," he said. But on the other hand New Zealand had a role to play in fighting against terrorism around the world, he added.

"One of the questions we have to ask ourselves is if we deployed the SAS could we help this global effort to stabilise Verb 1. stabilise - support or hold steady and make steadfast, with or as if with a brace; "brace your elbows while working on the potter's wheel"
brace, stabilize, steady
 Afghanistan so we could exit."

New Zealand wanted to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan in the longer term but the United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. , Australia and Britain have increased their commitment to the troubled country.

"(There is pressure to) up our commitment to stabilise Afghanistan so we can all get out -- that's something we are considering," Key said.

New Zealand's initial deployment to Afghanistan was made in 2003 and the reconstruction team has been committed until September Until September is a 1984 romantic drama set in France. It stars Karen Allen as an American tourist in Paris who falls in love with a married Frenchman (Thierry Lhermitte). External links  next year.
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Publication:AFP South Asian Edition
Date:Jul 20, 2009
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New Zealand mulls Afghan special forces plan: PM

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