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"More than half of Afghanistan is back under Taliban control and the Nato force in the country needs to be doubled in size to cope with the resurgent group, a report by the Senlis Council think-tank says. A study by the group found that the Taliban, enriched by illicit profits from the country's record poppy harvest, had formed de-facto governments in swathes of the southern Pashtun belt.
The Afghan government and its Nato allies strongly deny the Senlis version of what is taking place in the country and say the extent of alleged Taliban control – 54 per cent – is a major exaggeration. In particular, British troops in Helmand have, in recent months, recovered territory lost to the Islamist group."
"The Senlis report, while accepting that "collateral damage"' has led to alienation among the population, maintains that the Nato force needs to be doubled in size, from 40,000 to 80,000, and some contributing nations should remove caveats which prevent their troops from taking part in frontline duties. It also urged Nato to invite Muslim countries to contribute to the Afghan force.
Norine MacDonald QC, the president of the Senlis Council, said: "The security situation has reached crisis proportions. The insurgency now controls vast swathes of unchallenged territory including rural areas, border areas, some district centres, and important road arteries."
Originally posted by Silcone Synapse
Slightly surprised that no one has replied to this one.
Will no one tell me this is not a fair representation of the Afghanistan mission?
I was thinking some may disagree with the report..
Opium production in Afghanistan, which provides more than 90 percent of the world's heroin, broke all records in 2006, reaching a historic high despite ongoing U.S.-sponsored eradication efforts, the Bush administration reported yesterday.