Video: Afghanistan war reaches next phase

updated 2/27/2009 6:10:34 PM ET 2009-02-27T23:10:34

There may be between 10,000 and 15,000 Taliban fighting inside the country, and the insurgent group is operating in about 17 provinces, Afghanistan's interior minister said.

Mohammad Hanif Atmar offered a rare estimate of the size of his government's most organized and potent opponent during a visit to Washington. A large delegation of senior Afghan officials was in the U.S. capital this week, along with a delegation from Pakistan.

Both groups were weighing in as the new Obama administration forms a new strategy for the war in Afghanistan and a related policy for Pakistan.

Afghan officials said they told their hosts that a new strategy must include better cooperation from Pakistan, where Taliban and other militants have command operations.

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