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NATO Deploys 2,000 More Troops For Afghan Elections

U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan (file photo) Kabul, 29 August 2005 (RFE/RL) -- NATO-led peacekeepers have deployed 2,000 extra troops across northern and western Afghanistan to secure the parliamentary elections on 18 September.

The deployment brings to nearly 11,000 the number of soldiers under the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), which has operated under a UN mandate since the fall of the Taliban in 2001.

ISAF spokesman Major Andy Elmes said the extra forces come from 10 different NATO countries. Separately, the American military has added a 700-strong battalion to its forces to help ensure smooth voting.

Attacks by militants linked to the Taliban movement have risen in the run up to the polls, with more than 1,000 people, including some election candidates, dying so far this year.

(RFE/RL's Radio Free Afghanistan, AFP)