German Army Brig. Gen. Ernst-Peter Klaffus (from left), German Army Lt. Gen. Erich Pfeffer, British Army Lt. Gen. Richard Cripwell and German Army Brig. Gen. Wolf-Jürgen Stahl pose for a photo after the transfer of authority ceremony at TAAC-North on August 21, 2018 in Mazar-e Sharif, Afghanistan. Klaffus is the incoming commander for TAAC-North.
By: U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Shaiyla Hakeem, Resolute Support Public Affairs
MAZAR-E SHARIF, Afghanistan -- German Army Brig. Gen. Wolf-Jürgen Stahl officially handed over the command of Train, Advise and Assist Command-North to German Army Brig. Gen. Gerhard Ernst-Peter Klaffus during a transfer of authority ceremony, August 21, at Camp Marmal.
"Your command has not only supported the Afghan forces but also the people living here in the northern region,” said British Army Lt. Gen. Richard Cripwell, Resolute Support deputy commander. "The strategic objective of a political settlement and peace in Afghanistan is within reach.”
Cripwell thanked Germany’s commitment as the second highest contributing nation to the mission, and the framework nation for Resolute Support in the north. He commended Stahl and his command for being highly engaged in assisting their partners and improving the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces.
Train, Advise and Assist Command-North is the most multinational command in Afghanistan, with 21 nations represented including Albania, Armenia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia/Herzegovina, Croatia, Estonia, Finland, Georgia, Germany, Hungary, Latvia, Luxemburg, Macedonia, Mongolia, Montenegro, the Netherlands, Romania, Sweden, Turkey and the United States.
"I am grateful for having had the opportunity to work together with soldiers from more than 21 nations,” said Stahl upon his departure. "Every nation had a clear understanding of the mission and contributed as a team member to the overall success of TAAC-N [Train, Advise and Assist Command-North].”
Stahl took command of Train, Advise and Assist Command-North in October 2017 and has led more than 2,200 multinational service members of the coalition, directed numerous reconnaissance missions, key leader engagements and successfully executed two Expeditionary Advisory Package missions to Faryab province.
Stahl also assisted in organizing delivery of computer supplies and food kits to villages in Balkh province. His next duty assignment will be as Multinational Corps Northeast chief of staff in Szczecin, Poland.
"The people of Afghanistan can be proud of their servicemen and women,” said Stahl. "We are feeling honored to be able to support the fight of such dedicated and brave members of the Afghan society.”
German Army Lt. Gen. Erich Pfeffer, German Joint Forces Operations Command commander, who flew into Afghanistan for the ceremony, outlined that the expectations to the German contingent have clearly been met, and Stahl should be proud of his achievements.
"The Afghan people are no longer willing to be victimized by violence and terror, and thus they clearly take a stand against the enemies of peace and democracy,” said Pfeffer addressing the progress.
Klaffus, the incoming commander, comes from the Federal Ministry of Defence, where he served as liaison officer and advisor to the Federal President.
Established in 2015, Resolute Support (RS) is a NATO-led, non-combat mission to train, advise and assist the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF), who assumed nationwide responsibility for Afghanistan’s security following the conclusion of the previous NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) mission. Its purpose is to help the Afghan security forces and institutions develop the capacity to defend Afghanistan and protect its citizens in a sustainable manner.