Insider attacks prompt suspension
Tue, 18 Sep 2012 12:24p.m.
NATO says that it has scaled back operations with Afghan soldiers and policemen to lower the risk of insider attacks and reduce local tensions over an anti-Islam video that prompted protests in Afghanistan.
It's the second order that curbs contact between foreign troops and their Afghan partners, undermining the mantra that both sides are fighting the Taliban "shoulder to shoulder." The directive could jeopardise the US-led coalition's key goal to get Afghan forces ready to take over security from foreign forces by the end of 2014 - just 27 months from now.
Until now, coalition troops routinely conducted operations such as patrolling or manning outposts with their Afghan counterparts. Under the new rules issued on Sunday by Lt. Gen. James Terry, such operations are no longer routine and require the approval of the regional commander.
Insider attacks have spiked in recent months. So far this year, 51 international troops have been killed by Afghan forces or militants wearing their uniforms - a development that has fractured the trust between NATO troops and their Afghan allies. The disturbing trend comes as Afghans chanting "Death to America" have staged several recent protests against an anti-Islam film produced in the US The film also sparked demonstrations in other nations.
A protest in Kabul over the film that mocks the Prophet Muhammad turned violent Monday, with hundreds of men torching tires, cars and shipping containers and lobbing rocks at a US base on the edge of the capital. More than 20 police officers were injured by rocks before the protesters were finally dispersed by officers shooting in the air, officials said.
"Recent events outside of and inside Afghanistan related to the Innocence of Muslims video, plus the conduct of recent insider attacks, have given cause for ISAF troops to exercise increased vigilance and carefully review all activities and interactions with the local population," said coalition spokesman Jamie Graybeal.
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19/09/2012 8:17:13 a.m.
Fair NZer wrote:
Get out quick! Sounds like another Vietnam War....
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