UK fears for Afghan police
March 29, 2010 12:00AM
LONDON: Serious concerns over the Afghan National Police have been voiced in
leaked British documents, which warn that building an effective force will take
The Independent on Sunday quoted internal Foreign Office papers saying
non-existent "ghost recruits" may account for up to a quarter of the force's
alleged strength, while concerns are also raised over drug use.
"The scale of the challenge is immense," a briefing for a British official
said, according to the newspaper. "Building an independent, professional and
accountable police force will take many years and require considerable
Plans are in place to expand the strength of Afghan police from about 100,000
to 160,000 as part of the fight against the Taliban insurgency.
A spokeswoman for the Foreign Office said: "We are aware of widespread
criticisms of the ANP, some of which are deeply concerning. The UK is fully
committed to police reform to ensure a professional and accountable police
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