U.S. troops to deploy to Kosovo

March 14, 2013 at 8:41 AM

GRAFENWÖHR, Germany, March 14 (UPI) -- For the first time in a decade, active-duty U.S. soldiers will be deployed to Kosovo to contribute to a NATO peacekeeping mission, officials said.

Service members of the 525th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade out of Fort Bragg, N.C., the National Guard, reserve and other active-duty units, will travel in April to Hohenfels, Germany, for training before deploying to Kosovo, a U.S. Army Forces Command spokesman said.

Kosovo Force 17 will be made up of 773 service members, Stars and Stripes reported Wednesday. The force will anchor Multinational Battlegroup-East, one of two NATO contingents maintaining security and freedom in the ethnically divided country.

The last time U.S. forces were stationed in Kosovo was November 2002 to July 2003, U.S. Army Europe said.

Troop withdrawals from Iraq and Afghanistan have made more active-duty soldiers available for the Kosovo mission, the spokesman said.

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