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News number: 8809161505

18:53 | 2009-12-07


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Analyst: No Military Solution Envisaged for Afghanistan's Problem

TEHRAN (FNA)- Afghanistan's problems cannot be solved through military solutions, an Afghan analyst said on Monday, referring to a US and NATO offensive on the southern province of Helmand in Afghanistan on Friday.

"The operation - codenamed as 'Cobra's Anger' - in Helmand is not the first and not the last one of its kind and it won't be a determining move. Rather, the problem of this country has no military solution and anyone imagining that Afghanistan's problem can be resolved through military solution has committed an epoch-making mistake," Ahmad Saeedi told FNA.

Saeedi also reiterated that the only solution to Afghanistan's problems is common understanding among Afghans and the cooperation among the regional and trans-regional countries.

He further noted President Obama's decision for a US troops surge in Afghanistan, and stressed that the increase in the number of the US forces would not only stretch the war zone but also rouse the sensitivity of the regional countries and would diminish their enthusiasm for cooperation in the establishment of peace and reconstruction of the country.

Helmand produces about 50 percent of the world's opium. Its largely unguarded southern border with Pakistan is both a route for the illicit drug trade and for a steady supply of Taliban recruits and supplies.

Around 900 US Marines, British troops and 150 Afghan forces launched Operation Cobra's Anger on Friday as NATO nations pledged at least 7,000 troops to back the new US-led drive against the Taliban and Al-Qaeda

The operation is concentrated around Now Zad, one of the most troubled districts in Helmand and described as a key communication and insurgent supply route across southwest Afghanistan, heading north and south, east and west.

Ground troops were advancing in vehicles and Marines on foot, searching villages and compounds, Taliban meeting places and sites used to store weapons.

Under Obama's troop build-up, the Marine Corps is expected to deploy up to 9,000 forces in Helmand, where British troops have struggled for years to rein in an increasingly virulent Taliban insurgency.

The United States has been stepping up appeals for further allied troop reinforcements since Obama announced Tuesday that he was sending 30,000 more US troops to Afghanistan over the coming months.