KABUL, Afghanistan — More than 350 Afghan soldiers graduated from training with U.S. Special Forces troops Tuesday, vowing to serve their country and not warlords or ethnic groups.
In a ceremony at a military training center in Kabul, the capital, the soldiers marched briskly past President Hamid Karzai and Defense Minister Mohammed Qassim Fahim.
The event raised hopes that Afghanistan will eventually have a full-fledged army that can ensure stability and end decades of conflict among rival ethnic groups.
"The whole world is watching you," Fahim told the 350 enlisted men and 36 officers of the 1st Battalion, who underwent three months of intensive training. "All the people are hopeful of this national army, which should be trusted by all the people. It is a great day for all the Afghan people."