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First 2012 class of Afghan National Police officers graduate in Kandahar province

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Afghan National Police graduated new officers who have just completed the officer candidate school here Sept. 20, 2012.

Most of the 69 officers are from Spin Boldak, a border town near Pakistan, while the rest of the officers are from Kandahar City.

The six-month-long course which began back in April covered a wide range of police instruction from ethics, rule of law, civil rights, self defense, Afghan constitution, tactical weapons, and leadership in law enforcement.

The latest class to graduate from the ANP OCS program is the first class to have graduated from the entirely Afghan-led course without coalition support or help of advisers, which marks a milestone for the ANP. It is also the sign of gradual transition from coalition forces to Afghan control. “This was the first course the Afghans led without support from the coalition – their determination, resilience and passion reflected their determination to see their nations succeed,” said Staff Sgt. Jeffery Guzman, the Kandahar Training Center noncommissioned officer in charge.

Many of the new officers will have to overcome some obstacles, as they begin working in their jobs. “The increased position comes with increased responsibility,” said Col. Christopher Reed, the Regional Support Command-South commander as he addressed the graduating class, explaining that there will be challenges and they, as leaders must lead by example.

The successful graduation of the new ANP officers this shows that the ANP are able to sustain themselves with providing instructors and conducting the training at their academies to further continue bolstering their ranks and contributing to the security of the Kandahar province.

NATO Training Mission - Afghanistan is a coalition of 38 troop-contributing nations charged with assisting the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in generating a capable and sustainable Afghan National Security Force ready to take lead of their country's security by 2014. For more information about NTM-A, visit www.ntm-a.com.

Article by Petty Officer 2nd Class Ronald Pitts, Regional Support Command-South