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US says Washington remains concerned about Karzai

US says Washington remains concerned about Karzai

The Obama administration voiced fresh misgivings Monday about a series of critical statements that Afghan President Hamid Karzai has made about the West and America's role in Afghanistan.
White House spokesman Robert Gibbs characterized as troubling reports that Karzai threatened in a private meeting with lawmakers to abandon the political process and join the Taliban insurgency if he continued to receive pressure from Western backers to overhaul his government.
"On behalf of the American people, we're frustrated with the remarks," Gibbs told reporters.
Karzai's comments are the latest in a string of statements by the Afghan leader that have worried U.S. officials. On Thursday, Karzai lashed out against the United Nations and the international community, accusing them of perpetrating a "vast fraud" in last year's presidential polls as part of a conspiracy to deny him re-election or tarnish his victory. The United States has denied those accusations.
"The substance of the remarks are obviously not true," Gibbs said.
Afghan lawmakers speaking on condition of anonymity said Karzai dismissed on Saturday suggestions that damage has been inflicted on relations with the United States and said he had clarified things in a telephone conversation with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.
Karzai's comments came just days after President Barack Obama made a surprise, six-hour visit to Afghanistan last week. He met there with the Afghan president and other officials and reportedly told them in clear terms that they must step up progress in reducing government corruption. A planned meeting between Obama and Karzai in Washington on May 12 still is scheduled, Gibbs said.


Updated : 2021-07-30 08:24 GMT+08:00