March 22nd, 2011
07:22 AM ET

7 areas to begin handover to Afghan forces in July

Seven areas of Afghanistan, including the capital Kabul and a city in the restless province of Helmand, will begin to be handed over to Afghan forces to maintain their security in July, Afghan President Hamid Karzai said on Tuesday.

The announcement from the president marks the first step in NATO's long-awaited plan to hand over security to a series of provinces across the country, leading up to 2014 when it is expected that Afghan security forces will be in control of the whole country. FULL POST

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Filed under: Afghan security forces • Helmand • Kabul • Karzai
March 21st, 2011
12:07 PM ET

Photos published of alleged U.S. atrocities in Afghanistan

Spc. Jeremy Morlock, left, and Pfc. Andrew Holmes are facing charges relating to the wrongful deaths of Afghan civilians.

The German news outlet Der Spiegel has published photographs of what appear to be two U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan posing over the bodies of dead Afghans - images which threaten to further complicate the American military effort there.

Two images show the soldiers kneeling by a bloody body sprawled over a patch of sand and grass. A third shows what appears to be two bodies propped up, back to back, against a post in front of a military vehicle.

Der Spiegel identifies the soldiers as Spc. Jeremy Morlock and Pfc. Andrew Holmes, who are both facing charges relating to the wrongful deaths of Afghan civilians. FULL POST

February 25th, 2011
02:19 PM ET

Inside an Afghan bank massacre

CNN's Phil Black reports on a Taliban-led massacre in an Afghan bank.

More civilian casualties reported in northeastern Afghanistan
The governor of Kunar province said that 64 civilians were killed by NATO and Afghan security forces last week.
February 24th, 2011
10:33 AM ET

More civilian casualties reported in northeastern Afghanistan

Just days after the governor of an northeastern Afghanistan province claimed dozens of civilians were killed in a NATO-led mission targeting insurgents, new allegations of civilian casualties surfaced in a nearby province Thursday.

NATO's International Security Assistance Force is investigating the claims stemming from an operation Thursday morning in the Alah Say district of Kapisa province, the military said in a statement. Armed insurgents were the target, ISAF said.
FULL POST

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Filed under: Afghan security forces • Civilian deaths • NATO
Senators question Afghanistan's ability to fund force build-up
Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Under Secretary of Defense and Chief Financial Officer of the U.S. Department of Defense Robert F. Hale arrive to testify before a Senate Armed Services Committee.
February 18th, 2011
10:40 AM ET

Senators question Afghanistan's ability to fund force build-up

Some U.S. senators are questioning whether the ambitious plans to increase the size of Afghanistan's security forces are coming at a cost that Afghanistan can never afford to underwrite.

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates says the size of Afghanistan forces - what he called "our ticket out of Afghanistan" - is under discussion inside the Obama administration.
FULL POST

U.S. watchdog warns billions invested in Afghan security at risk
January 24th, 2011
12:18 PM ET

U.S. watchdog warns billions invested in Afghan security at risk

Billions of U.S. taxpayer dollars spent to train, equip and support Afghanistan security forces may end up wasted, according to the watchdog of reconstruction spending.

The special inspector general for Afghanistan reconstruction, retired Marine Gen. Arnold Fields, in what may be his final public event before he retires next month, painted a starkly pessimistic picture of what lies ahead in Afghanistan. FULL POST

January 17th, 2011
09:05 AM ET

NATO: U.S. Marine kills Afghan police officer after dispute

A U.S. Marine shot and killed a uniformed Afghan police officer after a dispute Saturday, NATO said, prompting an investigation by the alliance's International Security Assistance Force.

According to initial reporting, the police officer and the Marine had an argument while conducting security operations Saturday at a patrol base in Helmand province, in the southern part of the country, ISAF said in a statement. FULL POST

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Filed under: Afghan security forces • Troops
January 10th, 2011
08:30 AM ET

NATO: 3 Afghan police officers killed in mistaken-identity strike

NATO officials said Monday they have sent a team to investigate an incident in central Afghanistan where troops thought they were battling militants, but instead may have exchanged gunfire with Afghan police. FULL POST

December 24th, 2010
10:23 AM ET

Possible attack on U.S. Afghan embassy thwarted

A potential attack against the U.S. Embassy in Afghanistan appeared to be thwarted Friday as a joint Afghan and international military patrol killed two men during an operation in Kabul, according to an International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) statement.

The action was taken in response to a "credible threat" against the embassy, the statement noted.

Fifteen people were briefly detained in the operation.

The area targeted by the joint force was near an office building in downtown Kabul, the statement said. As the force approached two vehicles believed to be filled with explosives, they were attacked with small-arms fire. Two shooters were killed when members of the force returned fire; a third surrendered on the roof of a nearby building.

A significant number of weapons were discovered during the operation, according to the statement.

5 dead in Afghan attacks, airstrike
December 23rd, 2010
10:34 AM ET

5 dead in Afghan attacks, airstrike

Two people were slain in separate explosions in Afghanistan, and an airstrike killed three militants, authorities said on Thursday.

In Kunduz city, a suicide attacker Thursday killed a police officer and wounded five people, including three children, the Kunduz provincial governor's spokesman said.
FULL POST