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Afghan gov't welcomes U.S. forces pullout, MPs warn of negative impact

English.news.cn   2014-05-30 21:55:34

by Haleem

KABUL, May 30 (Xinhua) -- As the Afghan Arg, or Presidential Palace, has welcomed the U.S. decision to withdraw all troops from Afghanistan by 2016, some parliamentarians have warned of severe economic crisis in the wake of the complete pullout.

U.S. President Barack Obama announced plan on Tuesday to keep nearly 9,800 troops in Afghanistan after 2014 but virtually withdrawing all by the end of 2016.

The Presidential Palace in a statement released on Wednesday expressed support to the White House decision to withdraw troops.

"The United States government announced that, within a schedule, it will reduce to zero the number of its combat troops in Afghanistan. The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan welcomes this decision by the United States," the Presidential Palace statement said.

"The government of Afghanistan is grateful to the international community for its assistance and remains confident that the Afghan forces will, as they did throughout history, protect their people and territorial integrity with courage and valor," it added.

However, a member of Wolesi Jirga or Lower House of Afghan parliament, argued, "If the NATO-led forces withdrew, the Afghan government would not be able to pay its security forces even for a single year."

The lawmaker, Shukria Barekzai, also opined that President Obama's decision to withdraw troops from Afghanistan would encourage the Taliban and their foreign supporters, the Daily Outlook newspaper reported Friday.

"In the prevailing circumstances, maintaining good relations with America is inevitable for Afghanistan," said another lawmaker Kamal Nasir Osuli, quoted by the Daily Afghanistan newspaper.

The Daily Afghanistan in its editorial advocated the presence of U.S.-led troops in Afghanistan, saying "the military presence of the U.S. and allied nations in Afghanistan would disappoint the Taliban militants and their foreign supporters to intervene into Afghanistan affairs."

To the Presidential Palace, however, the complete withdrawal the U.S.-led forces would get rid of the excuse of the war staged by militants against foreign military presence in the country.

"As President Barack Obama made the announcement on the reduction and eventual end to the U.S. military presence in Afghanistan, President (Hamid) Karzai calls on the government's armed opponents to avail of this historic opportunity made possible by the hard efforts of the Afghan government and to put an end to the war that is waged under the excuse of fighting foreign troops presence, and join hands in moving this beloved country forward to peace, prosperity and progress," the Presidential Palace statement said.

Meantime, the Taliban outfit in a statement posted on its website termed the U.S. president's decision for troops pullout as military defeat, saying "defeat is defeat no matter in 2014 or 2016" and the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (name of the ousted Taliban regime) is determined to continue Jihad or holy war till the eviction of the last foreign forces from Afghanistan.

Editor: xuxin
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