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Kabul Korrespondence

Fresh, factual, and funky view of Afghanistan and the surrounding Central Asian region

UK losing troops to drug abuse

Sunday, December 16, 2007


The British army is dismissing the equivalent of around one battalion a year as a result of illegal drug use, a report by a UK security think tank has said.

Figures from Royal United Services Institute (Rusi) show the army is losing 500 to 600 soldiers a year after a four fold increase in troops testing positive for substances such as cocaine.

The findings, published on Friday in the institute's journal, come at a time when the British military is struggling to recruit and retain service members to fight in Afghanistan and Iraq.

In 2003 there were 517 reported cases of illegal substance abuse, this rose to 769 in 2006.

The number of soldiers who are dismissed is higher than the number of fatalities and serious casualties in both conflicts. Researchers said the results may be a reflection of combat stress.
posted by Travis, 5:08 am


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