Friday, September 18, 2009

Taliban militants 'can be turned' - BBC

The British general tasked with persuading Taliban militants to stop fighting in Afghanistan has said the mission is "do-able".

Gen Sir Graeme Lamb was giving his first interview since taking up his new role after conducting similar negotiations with insurgents in Iraq.

He told the BBC he would ask local village elders to identify militants most likely to give up their guns.

But Gen Lamb also admitted the war in Afghanistan "had drifted".

The former British special forces commander was appointed in August to mastermind a programme of reconciliation with members of the Taliban.

He came out of retirement to take up the position, for which he was selected by the overall US and Nato commander in Afghanistan, Gen Stanley McChrystal.

Dialogue drive

Speaking to the BBC from Kabul, Gen Lamb said: "The reason I've taken this post is because I do believe it's do-able. I am absolutely convinced we can do this."

For the rest of the BBC report click here

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