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Afghanistan government 'could collapse' after 2014, report says

The Afghan police and army are not ready to take over after NATO forces depart, according to the International Crisis Group.

Alo training suspended 02 09 2012Enlarge
Afghan local policemen (ALP) walk to their positions after inspecting their targets during a training session conducted by US Marines from 1st battalion 7th Marines Regiment at Forward Operating Base (FOB) Jackson, also known as Sabit Khadam, in Sangin in Helmand Province on June 6, 2012. The US-led war in Afghanistan has cost the lives of around 3,000 U.S. and allied troops, seen thousands of Afghans killed and cost hundreds of billions of dollars. (Adek Berry/AFP/Getty Images)

Afghanistan's government "could collapse" after US and NATO forces depart the country at the end of 2014, according to the International Crisis Group.

The BBC reported that the ICG's new publication, "Afghanistan: The Long, Hard Road to the 2014 Transition," said the Afghan police and army are unprepared to take over security responsibilities for the nation.

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The report explained:

"Plagued by factionalism and corruption, Afghanistan is far from ready to assume responsibility for security when US and NATO forces withdraw in 2014. That makes the political challenge of organizing a credible presidential election and transfer of power from President Karzai to a successor that year all the more daunting. A repeat of previous elections’ chaos and chicanery would trigger a constitutional crisis, lessening chances the present political dispensation can survive the transition."

The report goes on to say the prospects for free and fair elections and a orderly political transitions are "slim" if the government does not take steps now to ensure clean elections, and that there were signs President Karzai would try to "stack the decks" in his own favor.

The Afghan government said the allegations were "nonsense and garbage," the BBC wrote.

The government released a statement saying, according to the BBC, "our nation was not born in 2002. We have a history of 5,000 years. We have fought against superpowers in the past. Our national police and army are ready to defend the country's soul and sovereignty."

Meanwhile, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen told the BBC he disagreed with the ICG, saying Afghan forces would be ready by 2014 to protect the country.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/afghanistan/121008/afghanistan-government-could-collapse-after-20