(KABUL, Afghanistan) — Afghanistan’s solution to ending the string of “insider attacks” that have cost dozens of U.S. lives this year is by giving hundreds of its own soldiers their walking papers.
Along with firing troops suspected of conspiring with the enemy, Kabul announced that it has also arrested numerous soldiers in an effort to prevent the Afghan assaults on American and NATO forces.
Gen. Zahir Azimi, a defense ministry spokesman, said, ”So far, hundreds of people have either been arrested or expelled from the army. We have found evidence against some people and some suspicious people have been arrested.”
Azimi claimed the action to ferret out possible rogue security members began six months ago.
There have been as many as 30 “insider attacks” in 2012 that have left 45 coalition forces dead, most of them U.S. troops. These deaths have accounted for about a third of the coalition fatalities this year.
The Pentagon has been especially hard on the Afghan government to take greater steps to minimize the possibility of Taliban sympathizers infiltrating their forces.
In other developments, the U.S. military said its Special Forces had suspended training for about 1,000 Afghan police recruits to vet existing members.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Ralph Ellis, Ben Wedeman and Michael Pearson, CNN
Holly Yan, Chuck Johnston and David Williams, CNN