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Dannatt: Brown nixed 2,000 Afghan troops

Britain's Prime Minister Gordon Brown (UPI/Hugo Philpott)
Britain's Prime Minister Gordon Brown (UPI/Hugo Philpott) | License Photo

LONDON, Oct. 6 (UPI) -- British Prime Minister Gordon Brown rejected a call earlier this year to send 2,000 more troops to Afghanistan, the former head of the British Army says.

Gen. Sir Richard Dannatt, in an interview with the British tabloid The Sun, said his call for more troops was rejected and that since then, Taliban insurgents have stepped up their attacks in Afghanistan's Helmand province, where the 220th British soldier was killed Monday, The Times of London reported.

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Dannatt, who now serves as the Constable of the Tower of London, told The Sun he was "disappointed" with the Labor Party government's support for the Army, saying: "The military advice has been for an uplift since the beginning of 2009. If the military says we need more troops and we can supply them, then frankly they should take that advice and deploy up to the level we recommend."

Dannatt said the government's policies meant that the Army was fighting in Afghanistan with "at least part of one arm tied behind one's back."

The British Cabinet reportedly will again take up the question of troop levels in Afghanistan this week.

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