UK Lawmakers Warn of Afghan Civil War

Plan appears to be to 'hope for the best,' committee finds

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Apr 10, 2013 2:01 AM CDT

(Newser) – Afghanistan is in danger of descending into civil war after coalition forces end their frontline role next year, and the UK government's strategy appears to be simply to withdraw and hope for the best, a group of British lawmakers warns. A report from a cross-party defense committee warns that coalition forces' failure to reduce violence does not bode well for Afghanistan's future, and the government has done little to counter the perception that the pullout is basically "withdrawal through fatigue," the Guardian reports.

The committee said an Afghan-led peace deal with the Taliban is key to securing the country's future, as are free elections and efforts to combat corruption and the drug trade, the BBC reports. The lawmakers expressed concern that not enough was being done to train and equip Afghan forces before the pullout. "We hope that Afghanistan can become a secure, prosperous, and flourishing country but we are concerned that Afghanistan could descend into civil war within a few years," the report concludes.

British Army engineers prepare vehicles ahead of a major operation to airlift thousands of tons of military equipment from Afghanistan.
British Army engineers prepare vehicles ahead of a major operation to airlift thousands of tons of military equipment from Afghanistan.   (AP Photo/PA, Ben Birchall)
An Afghan security man carries RPGs following a gun battle between militants and Afghan security forces on the outskirts of Kabul.
An Afghan security man carries RPGs following a gun battle between militants and Afghan security forces on the outskirts of Kabul.   (AP Photo/Musadeq Sadeq)
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