U.S. and Afghanistan Inch Closer to Security Deal

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The Afghan government said that President Barack Obama has agreed to write a letter acknowledging the mistakes the U.S. made during the war. In exchange, Kabul will allow American troops to operate in the country after December 2014 when the coalition’s mandate expires, according to the Wall Street Journal.

President Hamid Karzai said that if Obama writes the letter, Kabul will permit certain raids on Afghan homes — a consistent source of local outrage over the past decade — when American lives are at risk, Karzai’s spokesman said. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry made the compromise with Karzai over the phone on Tuesday. Officials in Washington have confirmed that a phone call took place, but not the substance of the call.

The security agreement would provide for a limited counter-terrorism force in Afghanistan after the end of next year, which the U.S. government is making a condition for international aid — the main source of funding for the Afghan army and Afghan police facing a Taliban insurgency. Details of the agreement will likely be submitted to the Afghan loya jirga, or council of elders, which is convening on Thursday.