News / Asia

Afghanistan Will Sign US Security Pact, Says Germany

Afghan President Hamid Karzai greets journalists as he leaves a press conference at the presidential palace in Kabul, Afghanistan on Jan. 25, 2014.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai greets journalists as he leaves a press conference at the presidential palace in Kabul, Afghanistan on Jan. 25, 2014.
— Germany's foreign minister said on Thursday that he had received assurances from Afghan President Hamid Karzai that his country would sign a security deal with the United States that allows Western troops to remain in the country.
The United States has warned it could withdraw all its troops from Afghanistan unless the pact is signed soon.
Germany's Frank-Walter Steinmeier spoke to Karzai during a weekend trip to Afghanistan.
"He said to me very clearly: the deal has been negotiated, it would not be amended,'' Steinmeier told the Bundestag lower house of parliament, saying, however, that Karzai had given no indication of the timing.

The Afghan president had stressed that he could only sign the agreement once the reconciliation process in Afghanistan, which will include radical forces such as the Taliban, had got underway, said Steinmeier.

"I was pleased that Karzai said very clearly that Afghanistan would in any case sign,'' Steinmeier said.

The United States and other nations want to keep thousands of troops in Afghanistan for counter terrorism and training of Afghan personnel after U.S. forces formally withdraw at the end of this year.

The security deal is a condition for those soldiers to remain active in Afghanistan. Germany has some 3,200 soldiers deployed there as part of the NATO-led mission.
The U.S. director of national intelligence said earlier this week he did not believe Karzai would sign the deal. Karzai has previously suggested any security deal could wait until after April elections in Afghanistan.

You May Like

Video China Investigates Powerful Former Security Chief

Analysts say move by President Xi is an effort to win more party support, take step toward economic reforms, removing those who would stand in way of change More

South Africa Land Reforms Still Contentious 20 Years Later

Activists argue that the pace of land reform is slow and biased; legal experts question how some proposed reforms would be implemented More

In Vietnam, Religious Freedoms Violated, UN Finds

Beliefs reportedly prompt heavy surveillance, intimidation and travel restrictions More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
by: JKF2 from: Great North (Canada)
February 13, 2014 9:25 PM
The war in Afghanistan is a civil war, with multiple proxi interests keeping the war going. The US, with other NATO countries, for well over 10 yrs, having almost 100,000 troops on the ground, with an additional generation of almost 300,000 Afghan troops, have not been able to bring the war to an end. Leaving 10,000 US and a few other NATO troops ~2000 will just make the task of ensuring the security of the US/NATO forces be the main objective of their stay. Past history demonstrates that foreign, democratic origin forces, have very little impact on the outcome of civil wars. By most accounts, the foreign forces are not even welcomed by most of the population, Karzai himself has so indicated in numerous occasions, and for that reason restricted the operations of foreign forces. The continuous underhanded attacks, by Afghan uniformed personnel, on US/NATO forces completely negates a good reason to leave US/NATO forces behind. One of the prospective missions, the war on the heroin trade, was given up long ago. It makes little strategic or tactical sense to leave exposed/unprotected valiant/dedicated/honourable soldiers behind; all that will occur, is they will become victims and casualties for no good strategic need. !0,000 can't win the war that 100,000 failed to do. 10,000 will not magically trasform Afghanistan from its current state, into any thing like a democracy. Bottom line Afghan's need to resolve their own civil war. Afghanistan is another forced border country, resulting from the terrible colonial legacy. Afghanistan is not sustainable, because the different tribal/ethnic groups see different visions of the country, including some see joining with their main tribes accross the various borders. Given the lenght of the un-successful war in Afghanistan, a comparison to Viet-Nam is in order on many levels; in most cases the levels will show a picture of the negatives are in fact greater than those faced in VN, Korea, etc.. even the fundamental failing strategy is very similar = leadership not willing to use the force required to win drectly, and I am not talking just masses of lightly armed soldiers,but forces like in WWi/WWII etc; the indirect approach just does not work in most wars of this type.

by: chefbrucewest from: Warrington, Pennsylvania
February 13, 2014 9:53 AM
Thank god. For all of you readers who may be unaware of what goes on in Afghanistan, the focus must remain on education, safety and security of the innocent; particularly Afgha mm women and girls. If the US and the EU must pay the bill then so be it. For those whonarenalso unaware, Afghanistan has a unique and valued history that must be preserved. Perhaps I am wrong, but I do not see the Taliban supporting education for young women, which is critical for the prospects of economic success.

Thus the security deal makes some sense over the long term. In fact the US may save money in the long term by reducing the possibility of terrorism out of Afghanistan by working with their government. I would like to hear from Afgjans in the diaspora about my comments.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukrainei
Al Pessin
July 31, 2014 8:13 PM
The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.

Video Gazans in Shelled School Sought Shelter

Israel's air and ground assault against Hamas-led fighters in Gaza has forced many Palestinians to flee their homes, seeking safety. But safe places are hard to find, as VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jabaliya.

Video Rapid Spread of Ebola in West Africa Prompts Global Alert

Across West Africa, health officials are struggling to keep up with what the World Health Organization describes as the worst ebola outbreak on record. The virus has killed hundreds of people this year. U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders are watching the developments closely as they weigh what actions, if any, are needed to help contain the disease.

Video Michelle Obama: Young Africans Need to Embrace Women's Rights

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama urged some of Africa's best and brightest to advocate for women's rights in their home countries. As VOA's Pam Dockins explains, Obama spoke to some 500 participants of the Young African Leaders Initiative, a six-week U.S.-based training and development program.

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.

Video Study: Latino Students Most Segregated in California

Even though legal school segregation ended in the United States 60 years ago, one study finds segregation still occurs in the U.S. based on income and race. The University of California Los Angeles Civil Rights Project finds that students in California are more segregated by race than ever before, especially Latinos. Elizabeth Lee reports for VOA from Los Angeles.