Local police plan a success: US senators
WASHINGTON (PAN): Fresh from their trip to the region, three influential US senators have said the Afghan local police programme has shown signs of early successes.
"The programme has demonstrated some important early successes," Senators Carl Levin, Jeanne Shaheen and Jeff Merkley said in a joint statement on Wednesday.
"The transition of selected regions to Afghan control is on target. The proportion of Afghan troops conducting missions has significantly improved, and the Afghans are increasingly in the lead."
Increasing the size and capability of Afghan forces is yielding benefits, according to the lawmakers, who said their ability to protect the Afghans was the key to the success of the US mission.
"The vast majority of the Afghan people detests the Taliban and tolerate their presence out of fear," the senators said, adding coalition and Afghan forces had diminished rebel havens in southern Afghanistan.
As a result, they continued, the militants were increasingly focusing their efforts in eastern Afghanistan. Consequently, the Pakistan safe havens for the Haqqani Group and the Afghan Taliban Quetta Shura posed a greater threat than ever, they said.
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