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Afghanistan Ends Disarmament Drive

A soldier in Afghanistan (file photo) 7 July 2005 (RFE/RL) -- Afghanistan today ended a drive aimed at disarming tens of thousands of militiamen in the country.

Afghan Defense Minister Abdul Rahim Wardak says more than 60,000 militiamen were disarmed during the drive, which started in October 2003.

Wardak says that while the main phase of the drive is complete, it is still focused on seizing illegally held arms from underground militias.

Last month, Afghan government officials said that up to 1,800 small illegal armed groups are still operating in Afghanistan.