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WASHINGTON, DC — A potential U.S.-Taliban peace deal “will likely” fail to prevent Afghanistan from grappling with terrorists and descending into a “narco-state,” the U.S. Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR), a watchdog agency, declared in a report issued Thursday.
SIGAR chief John Sopko released the agency’s High-Risk List report, which covers threats to America’s multi-billion dollar nation-building efforts, at a Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) event.
The report declares:
With or without a peace settlement, Afghanistan will likely continue to grapple with multiple violent-extremist organizations, who threaten Afghanistan and the international community …With or without a peace agreement, Afghanistan runs the risk of becoming a ‘narco-state’ and has already been described as such by former officials from the U.S. government and international organizations.
Pentagon - Afghanistan - Concentration - Groups - World
According to the Pentagon, Afghanistan is still home to the “highest regional concentration of terrorist groups in the world.”
SIGAR cast doubt on whether or not the Taliban and Afghanistan as a whole will ever end its involvement in the opium trade, which serves as a major source of funding for both.
United - Nations - Watchdog - Agency - Reveals
Citing the United Nations, the watchdog agency reveals:
In 2017, the poppy crop generated approximately $1.4 billion for Afghan farmers, plus billions more for refiners and traffickers, amounting to the equivalent of 20% to 32% of Afghanistan’s gross domestic product—a share about the size of the country’s entire licit agricultural sector and far exceeding licit exports of goods and services in 2016. A peace agreement is unlikely to change that dynamic.
List - Report - Identifies - Threats - America
The High-Risk List report identifies serious threats to America’s $132 billion reconstruction effort, including widespread insecurity, underdeveloped civil policing capabilities, endemic corruption, sluggish economic growth, the illicit narcotics trade, threats to women’s right, the challenge of reintegrating about 60,000 Taliban fighters into society and the country’s U.S.-backed security forces, and restricted oversight.
The report points out:
While an equitable and...
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