Kabul, 29 Shafar 1435/1 January 2014 (MINA) – The NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan suffered 160 casualties in Taliban attacks in 2013, sources said.
Information received from ISAF said 127 of the dead were American soldiers, while nine were British and the rest were from other countries, Anadolu Agency quoted by Mi’raj News Agency (MINA) as reporting.
Casualties fell 60 percent in 2013 compared to a year earlier.
More than 3,000 ISAF soldiers have been killed in Afghanistan since 2001.
US-led NATO forces are withdrawing from Afghanistan after more than a decade of fighting the Taliban, but negotiations have stalled on a security accord that would allow some US and NATO troops to stay after 2014.
President Hamid Karzai first endorsed the deal, which lays out rules for US troops, and would be the basis for other NATO forces, but later said it might not be signed until after the April election that will choose his successor.
Signing the agreement is a precondition for the delivery of billions of dollars in Western aid for Afghanistan over the next years.
The Post, citing officials who have seen the intelligence report, said that Afghanistan will likely plunge into chaos if the security agreement is not signed.
“In the absence of a continuing presence and continuing financial support,” the intelligence assessment “suggests the situation would deteriorate very rapidly,” a US official familiar with the report told the Post, speaking on condition of anonymity.
However one official told the Post that the assessment was too pessimistic, and that there were too many variables to accurately predict Afghanistan’s future.
Some officials also believe that Afghanistan’s security forces are better prepared than the report states. (T/P09/E1).
Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA).