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Gordon Brown ‘ignored Army‘s plea to send out more men‘ to Afghanistan

08 October, 2009

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LONDON: Gordon Brown was last night involved in a bitter row with the former head of the Army.General Sir Richard Dannatt suggested the Prime Minister went against military advice and blocked more troops for Afghanistan - a claim strongly denied by Downing Street, reported The Mirror.

A spokesman for Mr Brown said: "Any suggestion that the Prime Minister has been unwilling to deploy more troops or provide necessary resources is simply wrong.

"There were 7,800 troops in Afghanistan in summer 2007. Now there are over 9,000."

The row came as the death toll for British forces in the country hit 220. The Ministry of Defence announced that a soldier was killed in central Helmand yesterday morning.

The soldier, from 1st Battalion The Grenadier Guards, died in an explosion while on foot patrol.

Last night‘s political row erupted after Sir Richard told a newspaper that ministers had left commanders trying to do their job "with at least part of one arm tied behind one‘s back".

"The military advice has been for an uplift since the beginning of 2009," he added.

Shadow defence secretary Dr Liam Fox accused Mr Brown of coming "perilously close to misleading Parliament and the country" about what the military wanted.

He said: "Gordon Brown repeatedly told us that he had been told by commanders on the ground and those at the top that they already had enough troops."


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