Afghanistan will sign U.S. security pact, says Germany

BERLIN Thu Feb 13, 2014 7:13pm IST

Afghan President Hamid Karzai (C) waits to order a coffee in the presidential lounge before the opening ceremony of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, February 7, 2014. REUTERS/David Goldman/Pool

Afghan President Hamid Karzai (C) waits to order a coffee in the presidential lounge before the opening ceremony of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, February 7, 2014.

Credit: Reuters/David Goldman/Pool

Related Topics

BERLIN (Reuters) - 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.

(Reporting by Andreas Rinke; Writing by Madeline Chambers; Editing by Noah Barkin)

FILED UNDER:
Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Monsoon Ends

Monsoon Ends

India's 2014 monsoon ends with double-digit rain deficit   Full Article 

Microsoft OS

Microsoft OS

Microsoft names next operating system 'Windows 10'  Full Article 

Fighting Islamic State

Fighting Islamic State

Kurds seize Iraq/Syria border post; Sunni tribe joins fight against Islamic State  Full Article 

Ebola Outbreak

Ebola Outbreak

UN Ebola mission head wants significant progress in 60 days  Full Article 

Anti-Islamist Pact

Anti-Islamist Pact

Hardline Buddhists in Myanmar, Sri Lanka strike anti-Islamist pact   Full Article 

Asian Games 2014

Asian Games 2014

Doping takes spotlight from teenage champs at Asian Games  Full Article 

U.S.-Afghan Pact

U.S.-Afghan Pact

U.S. signs pact to keep troops in Afghanistan past 2014  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage