Afghan President Hamid Karzai has agreed to send a group of military officers to Pakistan for training, a significant policy shift that Afghan and Pakistani officials said signals deepening relations between the long-wary neighbors.
The move is a victory for Pakistan, which seeks a major role in Afghanistan as officials in both countries become increasingly convinced that the US war effort there is faltering. Afghan officials said Karzai has begun to see Pakistan as a necessary ally in ending the war through negotiation with the Taliban or on the battlefield.
“This is meant to demonstrate confidence to Pakistan, in the hope of encouraging them to begin a serious consultation and conversation with us on the issue of [the] Taliban,” Rangin Dadfar Spanta, Karzai’s national security adviser, said of the training agreement.
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