Afghanistan welcomes US review, but calls for more resources
Kabul said on Monday it welcomed the latest US review of the Afghan war some four days after it was released, but urged it to go further, including by handing more resources to Afghan troops.world Updated: Dec 20, 2010 19:09 IST
Kabul said on Monday it welcomed the latest US review of the Afghan war some four days after it was released, but urged it to go further, including by handing more resources to Afghan troops.
President Hamid Karzai's chief spokesman Waheed Omer said military gains were "fragile" and Washington needed to do more before handing over security responsibilities to Afghan forces as planned in 2014.
"We welcome most of it and we believe most of it is on the right track," Omer told a regular weekly news conference in Kabul.
"But of course there are certain other proposals that we want more attention to," he said, adding that providing further resources for Afghan security forces, protection of civilians during military operations and strengthening Karzai's administration were Kabul's main demands.
Omer said that Afghan security forces, currently more than 250,000 police and army, lacked "proper" equipment to take over all responsibilities from their US-led counterparts -- an international force of around 150,000 fighting the Taliban insurgency.
He agreed with the US assessment that military gains, as an extra 30,000 American troops have been deployed, are precarious.
"We agree that there have been military gains ... and we also believe that these gains are fragile and could have setbacks," he said.
Under an agreement between Kabul and its Western backers, NATO and the United States, Afghans are scheduled to take charge of security in 2014.
Afghanistan is gripped by an increasingly deadly insurgency launched by the remnants of the Taliban when they were unseated from power in the 2001 US-led invasion.