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Afghan Taliban Vow to Defeat Planned US Troop Surge

  • VOA News

Afghanistan's Taliban have vowed to defeat U.S. troop reinforcements due to arrive in the country next year.

U.S. military chief Admiral Mike Mullen said Washington aims to send 20-thousand to 30-thousand additional U.S. troops to Afghanistan by mid-2009.


He said most of the reinforcements will go to southern Afghanistan, where the Taliban militants are most active and violence is on the rise.

The U.S. currently has 31-thousand troops serving in Afghanistan.

A Taliban spokesman (Yousuf Ahmadi) warned Sunday that U.S. forces will suffer the same defeat as Soviet troops who were forced to withdraw in 1989 after a decade of Afghan occupation.

An Afghan Foreign Ministry spokesman (Sultan Ahmad Baheen) told the French news agency that Kabul welcomes the planned increase in U.S. troop levels.

In other developments, the British Defense Ministry said a royal marine was killed Sunday in an explosion in southern Helmand province.

The ministry said the marine was killed during a routine operation northwest of the provincial capital, Lashkar Gah.

And, the U.S. military said it killed four militants and captured five others in southeastern Zabul province during an operation on Saturday.

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