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Afghan President Says Civilian Deaths Hinder U.S. Pact


Afghan President Hamid Karzai

Afghan President Hamid Karzai

Afghan President Hamid Karzai has summoned NATO's commander and the U.S. ambassador to warn that civilian deaths in military operations threatened a strategic pact he has signed with the United States.

A statement from Karzai's office on May 7 said dozens of civilians had been killed in NATO air strikes in the eastern provinces of Kapisa and Logar, northwestern Badghis, and southern Helmand since May 5.

Karzai warned that, if Afghans did not feel safe, the Strategic Partnership Agreement he signed with U.S. President Barack Obama last week "would lose its meaning."

The pact covers relations between the two countries when NATO forces pull out in 2014.

A NATO spokesman said John Allen, the commander of NATO forces in Afghanistan has pledged to "fully investigate" the incidents and "report back" to Karzai."

Based on reporting by AFP and Reuters
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