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    Fresh talks on BSA were successful: US

    WASHINGTON\(PAN): The State Department said on Thursday the third round of negotiations over the Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) between the US and Afghanistan had been successful and constructive, asserting the talks would be complete before the scheduled November deadline.             

     “The latest round was successful and constructive. Our long-term strategic relationship with Afghanistan is important to the United States,” a State Department spokesperson told Pajhwok Afghan News of the latest negotiations that concluded in Kabul on January 31.

     “Our goal is to conclude these negotiations within a year (from the commencement in November 12).  These types of agreements are complicated, and we expect that we’ll need many rounds of negotiations to reach the accord,” the spokesperson said, but would not go into the details of the negotiations.

    The latest negotiations follows last month's President Hamid Karzai's visit to the US, and his meeting with President Barack Obama. The two presidents agreed they should move forward on concluding an agreement as soon as possible.

    After the meeting, Obama and Karzai said the bilateral security agreement was in both countries’ interest.

    “The scope and nature of any possible post-2014 US presence, legal protections for US forces, and security cooperation between the two countries is to be specified in the Bilateral Security Agreement,” said Afghan Ambassador to the US.