BBC News: US to pay Taliban to switch sides

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

The US military in Afghanistan is to be allowed to pay Taliban fighters who renounce violence against the government in Kabul.

The move is included in a defence bill which President Obama is set to sign.
Such payments have already been widely used by US commanders in Iraq, but it is the first time the system is being formally adopted in Afghanistan.

Early on Wednesday, Afghan troops were engaged in a shootout with suspected militants at a house in Kabul.

A day earlier eight US soldiers were killed in bomb attacks in southern Afghanistan.

The deaths make October the deadliest month for American forces in the eight-year war in Afghanistan.

President Obama is yet to decide whether to send thousands more troops to Afghanistan.

Mr Obama has said he will not risk their lives “unless it is absolutely necessary”.

Continues at BBC News.

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