Joint Operations With Afghan Forces Suspended At Field Level

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A total of 12 attacks have taken place in past one month last month and36 assaults in the whole year, leaving 51 NATO soldiers dead. This suspension has threatened the plan to train the Afghan army so that they can defend their country from Taliban after the departure of the foreign troops.

General John Allen, the US and NATO commander in Afghanistan, has ordered to discontinue the joint operations and patrols until further notice.

The move comes right after the Afghan police killed four American soldiers on Sunday while two other British soldiers were shot dead by a gunman in Afghan militia uniform just a day before. The decision is also fueled by protests in the Muslim world against the anti-Islam film.

NATO has stated that from now onwards most partnering will be made at the battalion level. While at the lower level, the joint operations would be evaluated after the approval from the regional commanders.

NATO has declared that all on-the-ground operations would be ceased in some places and the foreign military advisers would also be stepping back to advice from the next level.

According to the strategy, 350,000 members of the Afghan security forces would gain experience in patrolling and fighting along with US and other foreign military soldiers but these insider attacks have shattered the trust. These attacks have alarmed the British, American and Afghan officials the impact these attacks have on the morale of troops and the derogatory public opinion in US and UK.

The decision has impacted the NATO-British strategy to work closely with Afghan security forces until all the combat operations are taken over by the Afghans by the end of 2014.

A NATO spokesman said that air support noncombat training operations will not be affected by the decision. Afghans and Americans will work together at Headquarter level, but at the field level, small unit operations putting American and Afghan soldiers together will be suspended until any order from the commanding general.

Leon Panetta, U.S. Defense Secretary, said the decision would not impact the departure of troops by the end of 2014.

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