Chuck Hagel calls Hamid Karzai on detention issue



Washington: US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel on Saturday called Afghan President Hamid Karzai and discussed with him bilateral issues, including the transfer of detention facilities.

"Secretary Hagel spoke with Afghan President Karzai this morning to discuss issues of shared concern, including detentions," Pentagon Press Secretary George Little said, after the telephonic call between the two leaders.

"They agreed to use the next week to conduct intensive work with a view to concluding an agreement that fully recognises Afghan sovereignty and our mutual interests in security of the Afghan people and our respective forces," Little said.

Yesterday, the White House said that it is working with the Karzai Government on transfer of the detention facilities.

"We certainly are working closely with President Karzai to complete the transfer of those detention facilities," White House Deputy Press Secretary Josh Earnest said.

Earnest was responding to reporter's questions on statements being made in this regard by Karzai in the last few days.

"This is something that we've been working through with Karzai for several months now; that our military leadership on the ground at ISAF is working closely with the Karzai government to affect the transfer of these detention facilities, including the one that you're talking about," he said.

"But in terms of where we stand in that process, I don't have anything new to offer from here other than to say that, as we have for several months now, that this is something that we're working closely with President Karzai to complete, which is the transfer of this detention facility," Earnest said.

PTI