27 May 2012

US can stay in Afghanistan for a further decade

2:14 pm on 27 May 2012

Afghanistan's parliament has approved a strategic pact between Kabul and Washington, clearing the way for a United States presence in the country for at least a decade after most foreign combat troops leave in 2014.

About 180 MPs were present and only four voted against.

"This was done for the interest of Afghanistan," said Daoud Kalakani, an MP from Kabul.

The deal, signed by US President Barack Obama and his Afghan counterpart Hamid Karzai in Kabul earlier this month, sets out a long-term US role in Afghanistan, including aid and advisers.

Most of the contentious parts of the pact had earlier been removed and dealt with separately, including giving Afghans control of night raids on homes and prisons used to detain insurgents.