2,300 police trainers needed for Afghanistan
BRUSSELS, March 26 (Xinhua) — Some 2,300 police trainers are needed for Afghanistan, said Maj. Gen. Robert W. Cone, who is heading international efforts to train Afghan police.
He asked for help from the international community to fill the shortfall.
The police trainers are needed for a new initiative to further reform the Afghan police, the U.S. officer told Brussels-based reporters through video link from Afghanistan.
The initiative, called Focused District Development, aims to both reform the police and improve local governance, public works, and elements of the rule of law.
“We need additional police trainers to assist us to broaden this program,” said Cone.
The program is planned in 52 out of 364 districts for this year, he said. At present, seven districts have accomplished the program while training is under way in eight other districts.
He said currently 1,300 police trainers are working in Afghanistan.
Cone said training the Afghan police is a much more complicated issue than training the Afghan National Army as police are more corruption-prone.
Afghan police officers also have competence problems as many of them were members of former militia and did not receive professional education.
Cone, commander of Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan, said the Afghan National Army can reach full strength of 80,000 by March 2009.
Currently, the army is 51,000-strong and another 10,000 soldiers are receiving training.
However, the army is not expected to be fully independent until2016 as capabilities, such as air support, are still lacking, he said.