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Afghanistan - police chief arrested

Top provincial cop arrested for working with Taliban

Article published on the 2010-02-07 Latest update 2010-02-07 11:34 TU

US marines on an exercise in Helmand province(Photo: Reuters)

US marines on an exercise in Helmand province
(Photo: Reuters)

The deputy police chief of Afghanistan's Kapisa province has been arrested by US and Afghan troops, accused of working with insurgents and of corruption.

Atahullah Wahaab helped rebels plant improvised explosive devices (IEDs) on roads in the province, as well as storing and distributing them, a statement by Nato's International Security Assistance Force (Isaf) says.

It also accuses him of being involved in bribery and corruption connected to road refurbishment.

Afghan security forces were involved in the operation, which took place on Friday, the statement says.

Local auhtorities have no evidence of the charges, according to provincial government spokesperson Abdul Aleem Ayar.

"Mr Wahaab has been serving as deputy police chief for the past year. He has been at the service of the people and we have nothing to prove he was involved in crimes or whatever the US forces say," he said.

At last month's London conference on Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai insisted that security will increasingly pass into the hands of Afghan forces and outlined a plan to win over Taliban fighters to the government's side.

He also came under pressure to fight corruption in official circles, especially the police.

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