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Mon, Nov

Merkel swings behind Ghani admin

Afghanistan
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President-Ghani-with-Angela-MerkelBerlin has assured Kabul of continued support for training Afghanistan’s National Security Forces (ANSF) beyond 2014, when NATO’s combat mission ends.

At a joint news conference with President Ashraf Ghani here late on Friday, Chancellor Angela Merkel promised support for the new national unity government.

With the security transition on the verge of completion, Afghan soldiers and police have been in the lead role in most parts of country. The switch will come a full circle early next year.

The chancellor said her country had a responsibility, especially for security in northern Afghanistan. She believed greater economic links were of enormous significance.

Speaking to reporters, the visiting president said his administration was negotiating a regional agreement on peace and security with neighbouring countries, including China.

But Ghani hastened to explain the pact remained a work in progress. "That is all at an early stage. We are working on a detailed plan."

According to a statement from the Presidential Palace in Kabul, Germany had pledged continued support to Afghanistan in areas of security training, education and economic development.

Ghani applauded the sacrifices of German troops in Afghanistan, thanking Berlin for its consistent cooperation over the past 13 years.
The president who returned home late on Friday added his administration would keep its promises regarding transparency in foreign aid utilisation and other governmental affairs.
Enforcement of lasting peace, a process involving all Afghans, was among his priorities, the president said, seeking international support for the reconciliation effort.