Britain's ministry of defence has dismissed claims by an Afghan warlord that Prince Harry killed insurgents while "drunk" as absurd. Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, a former Afghan prime minister, told The Daily Telegraph that Prince Harry, an Apache attack helicopter pilot, was intoxicated as he killed "innocent Afghans".
But an MoD spokesman said: "The suggestion that any member of the UK Armed Forces deployed on operations operates under the influence of alcohol is simply absurd —- not least because the consumption of alcohol by UK military personnel is not permitted under any circumstances while deployed in Afghanistan."
The former Afghan prime minister founder and leader of the Hezb-i-Islami party in Afghanistan, accused Britain of being dragged into the war to please its American allies and said its role in the conflict would have no significance after 2014. "I don't understand how the British public accept their children being sent to certain death in order to please American generals," he said.
Meanwhile, the Taliban has issued an end-of-year review in which it compared the impending withdrawal of US-led foreign troops to the 1989 Soviet retreat from Afghanistan and the end of the Vietnam War. The insurgents' emailed statement, titled a "Quick glance at 2012", said coalition forces had "completely lost their will to fight and practically began the process of withdrawal and retreat".
The Nato coalition reduced troop numbers by about 30,000 in 2012 and is due to end its combat mission in 2014.