A newly declassified investigation has revealed that the US military knew about at least 75 reported human rights abuses by Afghan military and police but used a legal loophole to keep funding the Afghan units. These human rights abuses included murder and child sexual assault, according to a report released [official report, PDF] Tuesday by the US Special Inspector General for Afghan Reconstruction (SIGAR).
SIGAR’s investigation was prompted by allegations that were first reported [NYT report] by the New York Times in September 2015.
The report centers around the Leahy law [State Department backgrounder], which prevents the Department of Defense from appropriating funds for training or offering any other assistance to a foreign security force if there is credible information stating that the unit has committed a gross violation of human rights. However, there is a clause within the Defense Department’s Appropriations Act that offers an exception to this rule when support to the units meets a “national security concern.” The report suggests that the Pentagon used this clause in order to continue supporting these Afghan units.