An Afghan police officer on patrol in Ghazni Province (file photo) (AFP)
September 3, 2007 -- The Afghan government said today that around 500 Afghan police officers have been killed in the past five months, in a wave of violence linked to Taliban attacks and a backlash against counternarcotics efforts.
An Interior Ministry spokesman, Zemari Bashari, described the death rate for the fledgling force as "very high," but he could not provide the previous year's figures for comparison.
Afghanistan's internationally trained police force is frequently on the front lines in battling insurgency, taking on army-type duties.
In the latest violence in Afghanistan, six Afghan security personnel were reported killed when a landmine explosion destroyed their vehicle in Kunar Province, in the country's east.
In the southern province of Zabul, police said that rebels attacked a convoy of civilian trucks supplying foreign military bases late on September 2, destroying at least 12 vehicles. No civilian drivers were reported hurt in the attack.