Saturday, May 11, 2013


Afghan newspapers disclose Kabul-Washington bargaining over security pact

KABUL, May 11 - The Afghan newspapers gave coverage to the ongoing talks between Kabul and Washington and bargaining over inking security pact and staying of limited U.S. military in Afghanistan after the 2014 withdrawal of NATO-led forces, on Saturday.

President Hamid Karzai, according to the English newspaper the Daily Outlook, revealed on Thursday that the United States is demanding nine permanent military bases in Afghanistan.

"Washington has sought military bases in Nangarhar, Parwan Balkh, Kabul, Paktia, Kandahar, Helmand and Herat provinces," the Daily Outlook writes in its Saturday edition, citing President Karzai's address delivered at Kabul University.

Meantime, another newspaper the Daily Mandegar focused on the White House immediate reaction, reporting that the United States does not have intention to remain in Afghanistan permanently.

"Any U.S. presence after 2014 would only be at the invitation of the government of Afghanistan and aimed at training Afghan security forces and targeting the remnant of al-Qaida," the White House spokesman Jay Carney said, according to the Daily Mandegar.

Describing the interaction as bargaining, the newspaper added that President Karzai pointed out that the U.S. side, before inking the security pact, has to give economic and security guarantee to Afghanistan.

Quoting President Karzai's remarks delivered in Kabul University on Thursday, another newspaper Hash-e-Subh writes in its front page that "strengthening Afghan security forces, building economic infrastructures and ensuring durable peace are among the pre-conditions for inking security pact and giving military bases to America."

Meanwhile, the daily Hasht-e-Subh also in its editorial supported the presence of U.S. military in Afghanistan after 2014, arguing that since Afghanistan is a poor country, the presence of limited U.S. forces guarantees the U.S. support to Afghanistan.
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