South Korea is considering keeping a team of reconstruction and aid workers in Afghanistan even after their mission ends next year, a senior government official said Sunday.
South Korea's provincial reconstruction team (PRT) has been stationed in Afghanistan since 2010 to help rebuild the war-torn nation, building and operating a hospital, a police training center and other aid facilities in the northern province of Parwan.
The facilities were handed over to the Parwan government last year, and the aid workers have since moved into the U.S. military base in Bagram, where they operate a hospital and vocational training center.
A team of some 60 South Korean troops are also stationed there to ensure their safety.
"If security responsibilities are handed over to the Afghan government next year, the PRT activity of each country officially comes to an end," the senior official said. "Local assessment of our PRT activity is good, and there is demand for assistance as well. We need to maintain this activity."
The aid team could continue its activity as part of South Korea's official development assistance (ODA) to Afghanistan, the official said. (Yonhap news)