Rising insider attacks on US personnel in Afghanistan 'pressing issue': Dempsey
Washington, Aug. 21 (ANI): The Chairman of the U.S.Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey, has said that an increase in insider attacks is a pressing issue for both the U.S. and Afghanistan.
Dempsey said that the recent rash of insider attacks have loomed over all his discussions with top U.S. commander in Afghanistan General John Allen and commanders in the field during his visit to Afghanistan.
"In particular, what's different about this conversation is that the Afghans themselves are now as seized and concerned about this as we've been. That wasn't always the case," Fox News quoted Dempsey, as saying.
Last week, after two separate incidents in which six Americans were killed by Afghan insiders, General Allen had ordered all coalition personnel to be armed and have their weapons loaded at all times, even on 'secure' bases, the report said.
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta called Afghan President Hamid Karzai and demanded he does more on the issue.
"We are deeply concerned about this and top to bottom and hopefully over the next several weeks," Obama said during a news conference at the White House after speaking with Dempsey on phone, adding: "We'll start seeing better progress on this front".
According to the report, almost 40 U.S. or NATO personnel have been killed this year by uniformed Afghans being trained by Western forces or Afghans who have been given permission to work on U.S. bases.
One in four troops killed in Afghanistan since January have been killed by Afghans who were supposed to be vetted allies, the report said.
"They're looking at literature, they are looking at the music that these young men listen to. So, I mean it's a holistic kind of approach to this. I'm not suggesting we can eliminate it, but I think we can reduce it," General Dempsey said.
According to the report, General Dempsey said that these insider attacks are not going to cause the U.S. and others to change the withdrawal timeline currently set for 2014. (ANI)
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