U.S. says Afghan security pact must be signed by year end
A security pact between the United States and Afghanistan needs to be concluded by the end of the year and it is neither "practical nor possible" to delay its signing beyond that time, the State Department said on Thursday, Reuters reported.
State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said the United States was trying to clarify remarks by Afghan President Hamid Karzai on Thursday that the bilateral security agreement could not come into effect until after next year's election in April.
"We believe that signing the BSA sooner rather than later is essential to give Afghans certainty about their future before the upcoming elections, and enable the United States and other partners to plan for U.S. presence after 2014," Psaki said.
"It is neither practical nor possible for us to further delay because of the uncertainty it would create, and because it would make it impossible for the United States and allies to plan for a post-2014 presence," she added.