In an attempt to stabilise Afghan forces, the UK government will retain some British soldiers after it pulls out combat troops in 2015, said the chief of British defence staff.

General Sir David Richards said in a BBC interview that some soldiers will remain in Afghanistan to support and train local forces.

"We haven't yet decided what the residual figure will be, but I think we are looking in the hundreds rather than the thousands," said Richards. Though the final figure is undecided, he said the number would not be in thousands.

According to Richards, the UK plans to reduce the insurgency level in Afghanistan in a way that Afghan security forces can take over from the British soldiers and also prevent Afghanistan from being used as a terrorist base.

"We're on track to deliver that strategy," he added.