New Afghan leader more cooperative than Karzai: US
WASHINGTON (PAN): The new Afghan Government led by the President, Ashraf Ghani, and CEO Dr Abdullah Abdullah, is more co-operative and better than the previous one headed by Hamid Karzai, top Obama administration officials have said.
“This is a different relationship than we had under President Karzai. It's clearly more cooperative and better. Many international audiences have seen the change,” National Security Council Senior Director at White House Jeff Eggers told reporters.
Describing Ghani and his CEO’s visit as an unprecedented and unique, Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Dan Feldman said the two leaders would be policy makers across the executive and legislative branches.
“They will have a number of opportunities both privately and publicly to help reset this bilateral narrative, as well as engage in very substantive discussions about where we continue to go as partners,” he said.
Ghani, who is also scheduled to address a joint session of the US Congress on Wednesday, is seen here as a much different leader – co-operative and assimilative – than his predecessor, White House officials feel.
“The expectation for the visit is, at the outset, setting a different face on Afghanistan given the new administration led by President Ghani. This is a different relationship than we had under President Karzai,” Eggers said.
Dan Feldman said the new Afghan leadership had been making slow but demonstrable progress in terms of well functioning of the government of national unity with a number of key cabinet ministers in place.
“They are eager to come to Washington to demonstrate their appreciation for all that the US has invested in Afghanistan, the sacrifices we’ve made over the course of the last 14 years, and to herald the beginning of a new chapter in the US-Afghan bilateral relationship,” he remarked.
Both Ghani and Abdullah had taken every opportunity to demonstrate that Afghanistan was on a path toward self-reliance, providing a credible framework for improving security, political stability, advancing good governance, promoting rule of law and respect for human rights, particularly for women and girls, and fighting corruption, he said.
Feldman said: “We are looking to these discussions to very substantively talk about how we can continue our partnership in the months and years ahead, and most notably to ensure that all the significant gains that have been made over the last 14 years continue to be built upon and strengthened…”
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