News / Asia

US, Afghan Tensions Rise Over Security Agreement

Afghan President Hamid Karzai leaves after the last day of the Loya Jirga, in Kabul, November 24, 2013.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai leaves after the last day of the Loya Jirga, in Kabul, November 24, 2013.
Sharon Behn
Security analysts in Kabul are warning of dire consequences in the region if Washington and Kabul cannot resolve a standoff over a key bilateral security agreement. Afghan President Hamid Karzai is refusing to sign the deal until next year, which Washington says could lead to a complete withdrawal of U.S. forces before the end of 2014.

In Kabul there are growing worries that President Hamid Karzai's surprise refusal to sign the security pact with the United States could have dire consequences for the country's future.

Mirwais Muqbil, from the Kabul-based political consulting group Hambastagi, says everybody is worried about Karzai's decision.

“It's a disastrous step and it will have dire consequences on the political and social situation in Afghanistan," he said.

The security agreement spells out terms under which an estimated 10,000 U.S. troops would remain in Afghanistan to assist the government in its war against Taliban insurgents. It also involves billions of dollars worth of assistance to the Afghan security forces and Afghanistan's fledgling democratic institutions.

During a meeting in Kabul on Monday, Karzai told visiting U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice he would not back down from his refusal to sign the agreement.
 
Instead, the Afghan leader laid out new demands, including further assurances that U.S. forces would not raid Afghan homes and that America express a sincere commitment to help start stalled peace talks with the Taliban. He also reiterated his demand that the United States commit to ensuring free and transparent presidential elections in Afghanistan on April 5.
 
In neighboring Pakistan, Political analyst Rasul Baksh Rais also is worried about Karzai's stance. He says Washington's so-called zero option, whereby no U.S. forces stay behind after 2014, would open the door to more violence.
 
“If this deal is not signed, then jihadi militancy in Pakistan will increase, it will be on much larger scale, larger numbers of people will be moving into Afghanistan to fight along the Taliban, and I don't think they will stay in Afghanistan forever," Rais said. "They will also be coming back and pursuing the same agenda of jihad against the Pakistani state.”

Afghan delegates listen to a speech from their committee chairman on the second day of the Loya Jirga, Kabul, Nov. 22, 2013.Afghan delegates listen to a speech from their committee chairman on the second day of the Loya Jirga, Kabul, Nov. 22, 2013.
x
Afghan delegates listen to a speech from their committee chairman on the second day of the Loya Jirga, Kabul, Nov. 22, 2013.
Afghan delegates listen to a speech from their committee chairman on the second day of the Loya Jirga, Kabul, Nov. 22, 2013.
On Sunday, the Loya Jirga, or council of tribal elders convened by Karzai endorsed the bilateral security agreement with the United States and called for the president to sign it immediately.

Once signed, the accord would take effect January 1, 2015.

All international combat forces in Afghanistan are scheduled to withdraw from the country by the end of 2014.

You May Like

UN Watchdog Urges Israel to Probe Possible Gaza War Crimes

More than 2,100 Palestinians, most of them civilians, were killed in a 51-day war in Gaza, along with 67 Israeli soldiers and six civilians in Israel More

New Kenyan 'Thin SIMs' Poised to Transform African Mobile Money

Equity's new technology is approved in African nation for one-year trial, though industry leader Safaricom says thin SIMs could lead to data theft and fraud More

Solar's Future Looks Brighter

New technology and dropping prices are contributing to a surge in solar power More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: ABC
December 11, 2013 12:40 AM
Who US or NATO is asking pemission to stay! They did not take permission of Afgan president when they invaded. Why this drama now! If they feel their stay will be better for Afghan people then they dont need any permission or agreement. I think US and NATO is finding reason to leave Afganistan as they dont have interest and resources to spend in Afganistan. Karzai is a Puppet as he was always!


by: John from: Australia
November 27, 2013 5:30 AM
One can only hope that Karzai sticks to his guns. All the troops out of Afghanistan, and no money to Afghanistan or Pakistan, is obviously the best possible result.


by: JKF from: Great North (Canada)
November 27, 2013 1:22 AM
After ten years and thousands of lost NATO lives, with absolutely minimal nation building gains, there are no real valid or justifyiable reason to continue spending valiant lives and massive resouces on a gvmt and people that do not want to become a Westernized nation. The main objective for Karzai, in my opinion, is to extract more resources from the West, and not to modernize or seculatize Afghanistan. Given the massive increase in the output of the precursors for heroin, no real change has occured; if at all the Taliban and their associates continue to expand and increase their holdings in the drug trade. Not much good has come out of the NATO strategy to look the other way on the drug trade, or on tying the hands of their military forces. Afghanistan needs to develop and support their own, by themselves - sink or swim. US(NATO) cant' do miracles against the will of the gvmt/people of Afghanistan..


by: AArky from: Ft Smith,AR
November 27, 2013 12:22 AM
The Generals and contractors who support them will kill to stay in Afghanistan. There are billions to be made from the fraud in all the contracts. $400 a gallon for gasoline to run the generators and Humvees to start. Afghanistan collects $1billion each year from taxes but yet many billions are carried out of the country every year by mostly Afghans. It's a sinkhole of corruption and the US hasn't got it right in 12 years. Bail out all the way, and let the Afghans sort it out.


by: John from: USA
November 26, 2013 3:34 PM
USA and NATO get out Afghan right now, no more help this country for nothing. Let them defense itself. Go home now, USA, EU.




In Response

by: Barekzai
November 27, 2013 5:32 AM
Let me guess...you're either a Pakistani or a Talib puppet of theirs, right? ;)


by: samuel from: florida
November 26, 2013 11:14 AM
Why continue giving these countries
Our monies when we don't have to.
Maybe we should keep our money to get rid of our deficit,and prepare ourselves for a stronger defence against those dummys.


by: Anonymous
November 26, 2013 10:51 AM
we need to fix our own problems instead of wasting us dollars on somebody else .period

In Response

by: Mr. Marc from: Washington State
November 26, 2013 8:38 PM
I agree. Stop giving our money away! It is ridiculous how much the US gives to other countries. I think for humanitarian reasons, some help is OK. But, it is not OK to just give keep giving it away.

In Response

by: John Ayoub from: WINONA
November 26, 2013 11:23 AM
Absolutely correct, the money the US spends on other countries could solve all the problems in this country including the national debt. But we all know that big business makes money from the support of military actions overseas.


by: Joe Weil from: San Diego
November 26, 2013 10:50 AM
Even this thieving thug, Karzai, is pushing Barry around. Domesticly Barry is the thug, attacking the constitution and inacting illegal laws that harm the people of the United States. However, Internationally he is viewd as a pusillaimous 12 year old punk who can be strong armed. Look at the backing down from Iran... Or the giving up on getting back the most damaging spy in U.S. history from Barry's brother from a different mother, Putin... or letting a group of terrorsts take out a U.S. Ambasador at will while being followed live in the White House situation room...just sayin'.


by: Frank from: Florida
November 26, 2013 10:29 AM
Don't wanna sign?.....Well, see ya...wouldn't wanna be ya. Fight the Taliban on your own then!

In Response

by: Anonymous
November 27, 2013 5:21 PM
All of you are so narrow minded ,,you all are just doing jobs doing persons ,,, dear you are not that good people to spend your billions of dollars on afghans .... It was your game and want to continue ,,, the money you have spent here not for the sake if afghans ,,, it's just your investment for the future ,,, in this area you have your becoming father china and Russia ,,,

Pls don't say .... Stop saying we should stop the money ,,, to whom you have given the money ,,and from us is getting the money ....

In Response

by: Omar from: Afghanistan
November 27, 2013 2:08 AM
You american people are very stupid.... in fact we don't want US in our country US is begging us to let him stay here, but US does that indirectly to show that he is not interested. If your have the zero option then what are you waiting for do it ......? no there is no zero option at all US failed in our country not just trying to find a respectful way to get out of here but slowly and slowly. Our President clearly knows that US wont withdraw now and he is trying to implement his demands on US somehow. and US will have no choice but to accept all of them.. you people will be watching US paying us billions of $ for not good and of course that is waste of money and time, but we are not blame this is what US has to to itself, this how US wanted a corrupt government in Afghanistan so he can reach to its goals, but failed. this what US support war criminals in Afghanistan and put them on power in order to keep innocent Afghan civilians weak and not being able to rise there voice, get their lands, steal and put all their rights received from NATO and the US and put all that in their own pockets. this what US has done so far in Afghanistan.

In Response

by: TIM from: CINCY
November 26, 2013 10:59 AM
He's not fight with the Taliban. He's one of them. He's not going to fight with his own Jihad brothers. Best way, bring our men & women home. Waste of time and money to support him.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid