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UN Envoy Warns Of New Afghan 'Insurgency' --> British troops patroling the road between Kabul and the airport on July 23 (epa) July 27, 2006 -- The UN envoy for Afghanistan has warned that the Taliban is regaining its strength and that recent fighting can be considered an "insurgency" rather than just "isolated acts of terrorism."

German diplomat Tom Koenigs said the Taliban insurgency is supported by foreign money, terror networks, and fighters coming from Pakistan.

Speaking to reporters after briefing the UN Security Council on July 26, Koenigs said that the Taliban has "to be answered by a series of measures, political as well as military."

Koenigs said that the Afghan government should focus on development and good governance.

Afghanistan has recently seen a sharp rise in violence, with insurgents stepping up their attacks.

A spokesman for the U.S.-led coalition said on July 25 that more than 600 suspected Taliban militants have been killed in Afghanistan in the past six weeks.

(Reuters, AFP)

Afghanistan And Pakistan

Afghan President Hamid Karzai (left) with Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf in Islamabad in October 2005 (epa)

ACROSS A DIFFICULT BORDER. The contested border between Pakistan and Afghanistan is some 2,500 kilometers long and runs through some of the most rugged, inhospitable territory on Earth. Controlling that border and preventing Taliban militants from using Pakistan as a staging ground for attacks in Afghanistan is an essential part of the U.S.-led international coalition's strategy for stabilizing Afghanistan. Officials in Kabul have been pointing their fingers at Pakistan for some time, accusing Islamabad or intelligence services of turning a blind eye to cross-border terrorism targeting the Afghan central government. Many observers remain convinced that much of the former Taliban regime's leadership -- along with leaders of Al-Qaeda -- are operating in the lawless Afghan-Pakistani border region.... (more)


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