Thursday, December 05, 2013

Key U.S. senator questions insistence on timing of Afghan deal --- (Reuters) - An influential Democratic senator questioned on Thursday the Obama administration's insistence that Afghan President Hamid Karzai sign a security deal by the end of 2013, suggesting that Washington wait for a "more reliable" leader to take office. -- In a letter to President Barack Obama, Senator Carl Levin, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said demands that Karzai sign the Bilateral Security Agreement by December 31 add to what he termed "the mistaken belief" that Washington needs the deal more than Kabul. -- The United States should tell Karzai that if he will not sign, Washington will wait for whoever is elected Afghanistan's new president in April, Levin said. -- "The next Afghan president, whoever he is, is also likely to be more reliable than President Karzai, and there would be greater confidence in his sticking with an agreement he has signed," the Michigan Democrat wrote. - More


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