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Police casualties up by 22pc, says MoI

Police casualties up by 22pc, says MoI

Jul 01, 2013 - 20:11

KABULinfo-icon (PANinfo-icon): Police casualties increased by 22 percent over the past one month, when 299 policemen, 753 Talibaninfo-icon and 180 civilians were killed, a Ministry of Interior (MoI) official said on Monday.

Most police casualties resulted from the roadside bombs planted by insurgents, MoI spokesman Ghulam Siddique Siddiqui told a joint press conference with his ISAFinfo-icon and NATOinfo-icon counterparts in Kabul.

With the weather getting warm, the insurgents were stepping up their attacks in a bid to raise questions about Afghan forces’ capability, Siddiqui said.

“But the Taliban will gain nothing despite having foreign support and escalating their activities. We are far stronger and can defeat them. I assure the people we are fully equipped and won’t let the rebels capture a single district,” he added.

The security switch and leadership of operation by Afghan security forces were among the principal causes of the increasing casualties, Siddiqui said. The casualties occurred in 387 offensives across the country.

According to the spokesman, 180 civilians were killed in insurgent assaults over the past month when 305 Taliban, including 15 suicide attackers, were arrested and 214 wounded. As many as 618 police personnel were also injured.

Most of police fatalities resulted from roadside bombings and suicide attack, he said, claiming the force was fast gaining the capability of conducting operations professionally and minimising their casualties.

The ministry, in a bid to control roadside bombing, had banned imports of ammonium nitrate, which is used in homemade explosive devices. Mine-defusing police personnel had also been trained, he continued.

During the past month, police defused around 200 bombs planted in residential areas and seized 500 light and heavy weapons along with 2500 kg of explosives, in addition to seizing 22 suspected vehicles.

ISAF spokesman Heinz Feldmann said foreign troops were training Afghan forces in how to defuse bombs. He promised the NATO-led forces would give the Afghans the equipment they needed, but the training process was lengthy.




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