182 words - September 19, 2013 | © DiploNews, all rights reserved.
US Deputy Defense Secretary Ash Carter has paid a three-day visit to Afghanistan, where he met with senior International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), coalition and Afghan officials. The purpose of Mr. Carter's visit was twofold: firstly, reviewing the progress of Afghan's government taking over security responsibilities across the country; secondly, stressing the "importance of a timely conclusion" to the bilateral security agreement.
The US official noted the "tremendous progress" made by the Afghan national security since they have assumed full lead for several weeks. Mr. Carter took the "quick and decisive action" of the Afghan forces after the September 13 attacks on the US consulate in Herat as an example of Afghanistan's growing ability to deal with a difficult situation.
With US Ambassador to Afghanistan James Cunningham and ISAF Commander Marine Corps Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr., Mr. Carter discussed "progress" made on concluding the bilateral security agreement with the Afghan government. However, DiploNews previously wrote, no decisive progress shall be expected before the presidential elections set for April 2014.
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