Gen. John Campbell, the commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, denied the existence of a policy directing U.S. troops to ignore allegations of sexual abuse of boys at the hands of Afghan forces.
The Associated Press reported that Campbell said in a statement Tuesday that he expects U.S. forces to report any suspicions regarding such sexual abuse to their superiors. Campbell’s assurance comes on the heels of allegations that the Obama administration has been punishing U.S. soldiers who reported that Afghan forces allied with U.S. troops are sexually abusing children.
Campbell, the head of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, said he expects that "any suspicions of sexual abuse will be immediately reported to the chain of command, regardless of who the alleged perpetrators or victims are."
He also added that any reports of abuse involving Afghan forces will be sent to him and the staff judge advocate in order for the Afghan government to "be advised and requested to take action"
According to Campbell, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has insisted that the government will not "tolerate" sexual abuse of children.
Ghani "made it clear to me that the Afghan government will not tolerate the abuse of its children, or any of its people, and will thoroughly investigate all allegations and administer justice appropriately," Campbell said Tuesday.
A senior Pentagon official told the Washington Free Beacon Monday that Afghan forces in the country have been caught sexually abusing children.