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Afghanistan tells troops to bring families from Pakistan

19 February, 2012

KABUL: Afghanistan's defence ministry has begun ordering soldiers who have families in Pakistan to move them to Afghanistan in a bid to rid the army of Taliban infiltrators, officials said on Saturday.

The new policy was crafted in response to a recent spate of incidents in which Afghan soldiers reportedly with links to militants carried out attacks against Nato troops.

"We have been told to ask our soldiers who have relatives in Pakistan to move them to Afghanistan," Abdul Hamid Hamid, the army corps commander in Kandahar, told AFP, adding that the policy was not yet finalised.

"Sometimes their families are used as hostages by some intelligence agencies to put pressure on them to do what they don't want to," he said.

Most of the soldiers who are recruited in Kandahar have families in Pakistan, he added.

"We have put up more strict rules in enlisting the new recruits.

Those who have families in Pakistan are checked more seriously," ministry of defence spokesman Daulat Waziri said.

End.

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