MPs fear Afghanistan civil war after withdrawal
Afghanistan could descend into civil war and corruption and drugs trading could continue to cause problems once coalition forces withdraw from the country in less than two years' time, a report from the Defence Select Committee warned today.
In its report the committee also said the Ministry of Defence and Foreign Office "painted a very positive picture of the transition" to the Afghan National Security Forces, but pointed out there were concerns over the capability of Afghan forces to fill the gap left once coalition forces withdraw at the end of 2014, particularly in terms of helicopters, close air support and logistics.
Given there are less than two years before the end of 2014, the committee called on the Government to set out how it sees its future role in Afghanistan.
There needs to be a contingency plan to deal with a breakdown in security as UK troops pull-out, including the possibility of an armed resistance to withdrawal, the group of MPs said.
And they conceded that some ground may have to be given in negotiations with the Taliban.
Conservative MP James Arbuthnot, the committee chair, said: "The UK and its international partners must show the Afghan people that they will abide by their obligations to continue to support them in their efforts."
Defence Secretary Philip Hammond said that vision was of an Afghanistan that could "maintain its own security and never again be a safe haven for international terrorism.
"The fact that Afghan security forces are now leading on more than 80 per cent of all security operations across the country shows we are well on the way to achieving that aim," he said, adding that Britain had committed £70million to an international fund to sustain the Afghan security forces after 2014.
filmFilm producers sue Warner Bros for $75m over Hobbit films
sportNapoli 2 Arsenal 0: Gunners must now face either Real Madrid, PSG, Bayern Munich, Atletico Madrid or Barcelona in knock-out stages
Swedish stars ask fans for £195 pledges on crowd-funding website
voicesJust when you thought you could find a man, get married, and have a baby by the age of 35... it turns out you’re too late, says Grace Dent
musicAs Mariah Carey and Noddy Holder rake in the royalties from their classics, why there hasn't been a decent festive hit for 20 years?
theatreAuthor Daniel Rosenthal recalls the mishaps that almost brought the curtain down on the likes of John Gielgud and Diana Rigg
lifeAs the Royal Mail plans to phase out deliveries on two wheels, it's no wonder posties are in a spin
musicThe 21-year-old beat Ella Eyre and Chlöe Howl to win the honour
lifeFull of the joys and want to help your fellow man? December isn't the time to do it
techLuke Blackall reports on precision engineered prams and babygros that monitor your child 24-7
Nelson Mandela memorial: ‘Bogus’ interpreter made mockery of Barack Obama’s tribute in Soweto
David Cameron explains selfie with Obama and Helle Thorning-Schmidt at Mandela Memorial
French café starts charging extra to rude customers
Krokodil in Mexico? Teenager hospitalised after 'injecting drug into her genitals'
Australia incest case: Severely deformed children found in remote farming community after generations of inbreeding
- 1 Nelson Mandela memorial: ‘Bogus’ interpreter made mockery of Barack Obama’s tribute in Soweto
- 2 French café starts charging extra to rude customers
- 3 Sun will 'flip upside down' within weeks, says Nasa
- 4 Is Facebook making us forget? Study shows that taking pictures ruin memories
- 5 Australia incest case: Severely deformed children found in remote farming community after generations of inbreeding
£22800 - £33600 per annum: Randstad Education Manchester Secondary: English te...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Birmingham: SEN English Teacher required to sta...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Birmingham: Randstad Education has been asked e...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Birmingham: English Teacher needed for a Januar...