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U.S. 'Not Seeking' Permanent Afghan Bases

A White House spokesman says the United States "does not seek permanent military bases in Afghanistan."

Jay Carney said on May 9 that any U.S. military presence in Afghanistan after most foreign troops withdraw in 2014 would "only be at the invitation of the Afghanistan government."

He said the bilateral security agreement currently being negotiated will address access to and use of Afghanistan facilities by U.S. forces.

The comments came after Afghan President Hamid Karzai said earlier in the day said the United States wanted to keep nine military bases in Afghanistan after 2014.

Karzai also set a number of conditions for the approval of the military bases by his government, including a U.S. commitment to boost Afghanistan's security, strengthen its armed forces, and provide long-term economic development assistance.

Based on reporting by AP and dpa