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Obama, Rasmussen discusses Afghanistan situation

Afghanistan
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Rasmussen-and-ObamaThe US President Barack Obama the other day discussed current situation in Afghanistan with the NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen during a meeting at the White House, a presidential spokesperson said.


“They spoke about Afghanistan and planning for NATO’s non-combat, post-2014 mission,” the White House Press Secretary, Josh Earnest, told reporters at his daily news conference after the meeting between Obama and Rasmussen.
Following the meeting, Rasmussen told reporters at the White House that NATO must sign the security pact with the new Afghan government by September, or else he warned there would be severe problem.

"If there is no clarification of this process before the NATO summit in September, it is hard to see how the security agreements could be signed before the summit. In that case, we would be faced with severe problems as regards planning for a training mission after 2014," Rasmussen said.
A bilateral security agreement with the US and the security pact with NATO, Rasmussen said, is a pre-requisite for a force that will initially number around 10,000 in Afghanistan after 2014.
In addition, at the Wales Summit, Allies will also turn a new page in Afghanistan. NATO will, at the end of this year complete its longest combat mission and has already started to prepare to train, advise, and assist the Afghan forces after 2014.
“We have achieved a lot, but not without cost and I want to pay particular tribute to the sacrifice made by American forces in Afghanistan,” the Secretary General said. Mr. Fogh Rasmussen stressed that “the electoral process in Afghanistan must run its course to a transparent and credible conclusion. This is vital for the future of Afghanistan and for continued international support”.