Karzai, new US envoy hold first meeting

Last Updated: Wednesday, March 2, 2011 - 00:13

London: The United States` new special
envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan held his first meeting in
the job with Afghan President Hamid Karzai in London on Tuesday,
Afghan officials said.

Marc Grossman met Karzai during his first official
trip since being appointed last month to take over from
Richard Holbrooke, who died suddenly in December.

Karzai, who met the US official during a two-day visit
to Britain, called for greater cooperation between
Afghanistan, Washington and Pakistan during the meeting, a
statement released by the presidential palace in Kabul said.

"The president wished Mr Grossman success in his new
position and said that the government of Afghanistan hopes
that cooperation between Afghanistan, America and Pakistan
will further expand and the three countries succeed in
overcoming the challenges caused by terrorism in the region,"
the statement said.

"In return, Mr Grossman pledged that he will try to
expand relations and coordination in the activities of the
three countries."
US officials declined to comment.

There are around 140,000 international troops fighting
the Taliban in Afghanistan, around two-thirds of them
Americans.

Control of security in Afghanistan is due to pass from
foreign forces to the Afghan army and police in 2014, with a
limited international troop withdrawal due to start in some
safer parts of Afghanistan from July.

Bureau Report



First Published: Wednesday, March 2, 2011 - 00:13

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