A Tornado aircraft taking off from the German army Bundeswehr airbase in Jagel, northern Germany, December 10, 2015. AFP / CARMEN JASPERSEN
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Germany's military is overstretched and underfunded as its troops are engaged in anti-militant missions from Syria and Afghanistan to Mali while also aiding refugees at home, the defense commissioner said Tuesday.Systemic budget shortages now endanger training, military exercises and missions, while many barracks are crumbling, said Bartels, known in Berlin as "the soldiers' attorney".Berlin also plans to send an additional 500 troops to Mali to relieve French forces in the West African country, where Germany is already part of an EU military training mission.In November, Germany also decided to increase to 980 its troop strength in Afghanistan to train and support national forces.To help the military cope, parliament has approved raising its budget from 33 billion euros ($36 billion) in 2015 to 35 billion euros annually over four years.
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