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Afghan defense minister: Security deal will pass

Oct. 24, 2013 - 10:36AM   |  
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BERLIN — Afghanistan’s top defense official says he’s confident a security deal on keeping U.S. and other international troops in his country after 2014 will be approved by an important national assembly, the Loya Jirga of tribal elders.

Defense Minister Gen. Bismullah Khan Mohammadi, speaking through a translator, told reporters in Berlin Thursday that when the Loya Jirga meets in late November, “we are very confident that we can vote for this agreement with a large majority and sign it.”

Afghan President Hamid Karzai has insisted the bilateral security agreement he agreed to in principle with the U.S. this month be vetted by the Loya Jirga.

The deal would allow American forces to stay after combat troops in the NATO-led military coalition depart at the end of 2014.

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