The top U.S. general says he hopes that by October, the United States and Afghanistan will sign a Bilateral Security Agreement, setting out the terms for a foreign military presence in Afghanistan after 2014.
General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, warned that if no deal is reached, all American troops could be forced to depart, leaving none to train and assist Afghan forces after 2014.
Dempsey spoke July 22 in Kabul, where he met with senior Afghan officials, including President Hamid Karzai.
Karzai suspended talks on a post-2014 U.S. presence in Afghanistan after Washington and neighboring Pakistan supported the opening of a Taliban political office in Qatar in June.
Karzai said in a statement July 22 that Afghans are “ready” to sign a security pact with Washington.
Based on reports from AP, AFP and Reuters