President Hamid Karzai said Thursday that the speeded-up departure of Western troops is the only way to prevent a recurrence of “painful experiences” such as the sight of American soldiers posing with the body parts of dead insurgents.
In a statement issued by the presidential palace 24 hours after the Los Angeles Times published photos showing U.S. troops manipulating the remains of suicide bombers and mugging for the camera, Karzai called the behavior depicted “inhumane and provocative.”
The Obama administration has condemned the actions shown in the photos, and the U.S. military has launched an investigation of the incidents, which took place in 2010 but have only now come to light.
The palace statement said Karzai sought an “accelerated and full transition of security responsibilities to Afghan forces, so Afghanistan can take over its own destiny, and thus no such things can be repeated by the foreign forces in Afghanistan.”
The NATO force has been due to wind down its combat role in 2014, but growing numbers of troop-contributing nations have indicated they plan to pull out their fighting forces next year. A transition of security responsibilities to the Afghan police and army is the centerpiece of the U.S. exit strategy.
Thursday, April 19, 2012
Karzai to US: get out faster
Afghan leader Karzai calls for a swifter departure of Western troops after revelations of body parts pictures.