General Sir Richard Shirreff
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Top General says insider attacks 'wont deflect' Nato

The growing number of attacks on Nato troops by members of the Afghan army or police is not having a major operational impact according to the most senior British general in the alliance.

In 2012 more than 60 Nato soldiers were killed by Afghan troops they were supposed to be mentoring or training.

Nato's Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe, General Sir Richard Shirreff, said so-called "green on blue" attacks were "a grim and insidious business".

But he told the BBC's Sima Kotecha that everything was being done to minimise the attacks through improved vetting of potential recuits to the Afghan forces to prevent infiltration by the Taliban.

General Shirreff also said there had been some success with the use of "guardian angels" - Nato soldiers who provide a round-the-clock armed guard for their comrades while they are training their Afghan counterparts.

The Nato-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) is working towards hand over full responsibility for security in Afghanistan to local forces at the end of 2014.

  • 15 Jan 2013