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Bush, Blair Pledge Continued Support For Iraq, Afghanistan

U.S. President Bush (R) with Afghan President Hamid Karzai (file photo) (AFP) 31 December 2005 -- The leaders of the United States and Britain have pledged to continue to support Iraq and Afghanistan as the two countries move toward peace and democracy.

President George W. Bush, in a written statement to mark the start of 2006, noted elections held in Iraq and Afghanistan during 2005 and said the United States will continue to stand beside what he called these "young democracies" as they lay the foundations for peace.

I his New Year's message, Prime Minister Tony Blair pledged that Britain will continue efforts to bring hope and democracy to Afghanistan and Iraq.

Citing the 7 July bombings in London that killed 52 people, Blair also vowed that Britain's resolve would not slip in the battle against terrorism.