Taliban increase attacks in Afghanistan.
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) -- Taliban militants and their allies have launched an intensified campaign against thousands of NATO troops deploying to southern Afghanistan, where the multinational force is taking over from U.S. soldiers.
Whether ambushing Afghan police from mountain passes or detonating bombs on lonely highways, remnants of the ousted Islamic regime have stepped up attacks, causing havoc and insecurity across a cluster of provinces.
Military officials and analysts said Wednesday the Taliban threat is the No. 1 challenge facing more than 7,000 U.S., Canadian, British and Dutch troops that by September will be fighting under the NATO flag in four southern provinces.
"This is counterinsurgency warfare (and) there will be casualties on both sides," said British Col. Chris Vernon, chief of staff for NATO forces operating in southern Afghanistan. "This is not the north or west of the country. This is a counterinsurgency war zone."