Karzai's advisors blame insider attacks on penetration by ISI

The sudden rise in insider attacks on NATO troops in Afghanistan has been blamed on penetration by the Pakistani and Iranian intelligence by top advisors of President Hamid Karzai.

After months of investigations, officials of the Karzai's National Security Council have concluded that both Pakistan's ISI and Iranian intelligence were recruiting young Afghans to enlist in the Army and the Police, with the intention of targeting US and NATO servicemen, the New York Times reported quoting Afghan officials.

"These neighbouring countries have become concerned about the growing strength of the Afghan Army and police and have stepped up attempts at infiltration, with an eye on the 2014 end game in the country," officials said.

Aymal Faizi, a spokesman of the President said that both Islamabad and Tehran were using these insider attacks as a way of checking the build-up of Afghan National Security Forces.

Faizi said officials had classified evidence to support these conclusions in the form of "documents, telephone calls, pictures and audios that show direct contact between individuals and foreign spy agencies".

The Times said that Karzai had handed over some of the documents to the US Commander in Afghanistan Marine Corps General John R Allen.

In fresh steps to recruit new entrants, the Afghan government has now made it mandatory on all soldiers to move back their families from Pakistan and Iran or else they will lose job.

US and other NATO countries have expressed concern over the spurt in these attacks with President Barack Obama dispatching his top commander to Kabul to hold talks with Afghan leaders.

According to US estimates, 40 NATO soldiers have been reported killed in insider attacks in Afghanistan this year with Obama's top advisors emphasising that the wave of such attacks was seen as a significant threat to the American exit strategy.

The Afghan government has also told Washington that some of the attacks were also motivated by outrage over actions by American troops, including the burning of Quran at an American base and the video image of Marines urinating on corpses of dead insurgents.

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