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World

Outgoing US commander in Afghanistan says alliance forces ‘on road to winning war’ in country

Sunday, 10 February 2013
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February 10:

Outgoing commander of Nato forces in Afghanistan, General John Allen, has said the alliance is on ‘the road to winning the war.

General Allen, who handed over to General Joseph Dunford on Sunday, said troops had gone ‘a long way’ towards winning counter-insurgency.

According to the BBC, General Allen is set to be nominated as the alliance’s supreme commander in Europe.

Last month, he was cleared of misconduct by the Pentagon in a scandal that led former CIA director David Petraeus to resign.

General Allen said that ‘counter-insurgencies take a while and it is difficult to put a dot on a calendar and say, ‘Today, we won’”.

He added that they have gone a long way to setting the conditions for what, generally, usually, is the defining factor in winning a counter-insurgency, ‘to set the conditions for governance, to set the conditions for economic opportunity.... I think we are on the road to winning’.

During his 19-month tour, General Allen managed the transfer of security across much of the country to the Afghan army and police.

His successor is expected to be ISAF’s last commander, who will oversee the withdrawal of most of the foreign troops in the country.

According to the report, there has not been any official announcement from the White House as to how many US troops will remain in Afghanistan.

Gen Allen’s nomination to head NATO in Europe had been put on hold amid reports that he had sent inappropriate emails to a Florida socialite, in a scandal that brought down the head of the CIA, the report said.

But allegations of professional misconduct were dismissed and the then Defence Secretary Leon Panetta said he had ‘complete confidence’ in Gen Allen’s leadership, it added. (ANI)

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