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While U.S. Talks Withdrawal, Afghan Corruption Soars

A new report says little has been accomplished to end the relationship between corruption and the conflict in Afghanistan despite a decade of U.S.-led military efforts.

The International Crisis Group's 46-page report provides sobering analysis of a culture of corruption in Afghanistan, which includes collusion with the Taliban at high levels of government.

It says violence and billions of dollars in international aid have brought wealthy officials and insurgents together. The result is an economy increasingly dominated by what the report calls a "criminal oligarchy of politically connected businessmen."

The report comes after a week when President Barack Obama sought to highlight the military gains in Afghanistan. He said he would pull out 10,000 soldiers this year and 23,000 more by the end of next summer. He didn't mention corruption.


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