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Highlights

The United States has invested more than $6.2 billion in the Afghan Ministry of Interior (MOI) and Afghan National Police (ANP). The Department of Defense's (Defense) Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan (CSTC-A), with the Department of State (State), leads U.S. efforts to enhance MOI and ANP organizational structures, leadership abilities, and pay systems. This report assesses the status of U.S. efforts to help Afghanistan (1) restructure MOI and ANP, (2) retrain ANP units, (3) screen MOI and ANP personnel, and (4) enhance MOI and ANP pay systems. GAO reviewed Defense, State, and United Nations (UN) data and met with officials in the United States and Afghanistan.

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Recommendations

Recommendations for Executive Action

Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Department of Defense 1. To help ensure that the FDD program can achieve its goals, the Secretaries of Defense and State should undertake a coordinated effort to provide dedicated personnel to support the creation of additional police mentor teams needed to expand and complete the FDD program.
Closed - Implemented
Following the release of our report, the Departments of Defense (DOD) and State informed Congress in 2009 that the President ordered the addition of 4,000 troops to train Afghan police and other security forces. State ended its role in the training of Afghan police at the beginning of 2010. In April 2010, DOD informed Congress that the USG had taken several additional actions to increase trainers and mentors for Afghan police. For example, the USG has actively engaged its allies and partners to contribute forces to fill requirements for trainers and mentors. DOD is coordinating an interagency plan to find foreign non-NATO mentors and trainers. DOD and NATO have established a Combined Training Advisory Group to help mentor and train a newly-created Police Training Command. Finally, the USG has identified short-term solutions to the most critical trainer shortages.
Department of State 2. To help ensure that the FDD program can achieve its goals, the Secretaries of Defense and State should undertake a coordinated effort to provide dedicated personnel to support the creation of additional police mentor teams needed to expand and complete the FDD program.
Closed - Implemented
Following the release of our report, the Departments of Defense (DOD) and State informed Congress in 2009 that the President ordered the addition of 4,000 troops to train Afghan police and other security forces. State ended its role in the training of Afghan police at the beginning of 2010. In April 2010, DOD informed Congress that the USG had taken several additional actions to increase trainers and mentors for Afghan police. For example, the USG has actively engaged its allies and partners to contribute forces to fill requirements for trainers and mentors. DOD is coordinating an interagency plan to find foreign non-NATO mentors and trainers. DOD and NATO have established a Combined Training Advisory Group to help mentor and train a newly-created Police Training Command. Finally, the USG has identified short-term solutions to the most critical trainer shortages.
Department of State 3. To help ensure that the United States does not fund the salaries of unverified ANP personnel, the Secretaries of Defense and State should consider provisioning future U.S. contributions to LOTFA to reflect the extent to which U.S. agencies have validated the status of MOI and ANP personnel.
Closed - Implemented
The State Department concurred with our recommendation in 2009, but later transferred its role in the ANP program to DOD. While DOD did not initially agree with the recommendation in 2009, DOD's Combined Security Transition Command in Afghanistan informed GAO in 2012 that it "no longer concurs" with that position and was working with the appropriate Afghan ministry to verify each member of the ANP. It also indicated that by early 2014 the verification process would allow a linkage between U.S. contributions to LOTFA and the extent to which U.S. agencies had verifed the status of ANP personnel.
Department of Defense 4. To help ensure that the United States does not fund the salaries of unverified ANP personnel, the Secretaries of Defense and State should consider provisioning future U.S. contributions to LOTFA to reflect the extent to which U.S. agencies have validated the status of MOI and ANP personnel.
Closed - Implemented
The State Department concurred with our recommendation in 2009, but later transferred its role in the ANP program to DOD. While DOD did not initially agree with the recommendation in 2009, DOD's Combined Security Transition Command in Afghanistan informed GAO in 2012 that it "no longer concurs" with that position and was working with the appropriate Afghan ministry to verify each member of the ANP. It also indicated that by early 2014 the verification process would allow a linkage between U.S. contributions to LOTFA and the extent to which U.S. agencies had verifed the status of ANP personnel.

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