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20000 civilians

Afghanistan mulls plan to arm 20,000 civilians to fight insurgents

KABUL: Afghanistan is considering training and arming 20,000 civilians to defend territories where Islamic militants have been driven out, officials say, sparking fears the local forces could become another thuggish militia.  The proposal for a government-backed armed group that would protect its own communities from the Taliban and the Islamic State group comes as Afghanistan's security forces, demoralised by killings and desertions, struggle to beat back a rampant insurgency. But the proposal has raised concerns that…