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Karzai Meets With U.S. National Security Adviser

Susan Rice met with President Karzai in Kabul.
U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice met Afghan President Hamid Karzai in Kabul amid questions about the future of U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

Rice is in Afghanistan one day after a Loya Jirga, or grand assembly of Afghan elders, approved an Afghan-U.S. security deal that sets the terms for U.S. troops to remain in the country after next year's withdrawal of NATO-led forces.

The Loya Jirga said on November 24 that Karzai should sign the Bilateral Security Agreement by the end of this year.

But Karzai told jirga delegates that he may delay signing it until after the Afghan presidential election on April 5.

The White House said the meeting between Karzai and Rice came at the Afghan president's request.

Spokesman Steve Warren said on November 25 that the Pentagon hopes Karzai will sign the agreement "as quickly as possible."
Based on reporting by Reuters, AP, and AFP