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Karzai to visit Britain this week

27 february 2011, 23:35
0
AFP
AFP
Afghan President Hamid Karzai travels to Britain Monday for a two-day visit to meet Prime Minister David Cameron and open a major museum exhibition about his country's heritage.

Karzai's spokesman Siamak Heravi, told Agence France-Presse that among other issues the president will discuss planned transition of responsibility for security from international troops to their Afghan counterparts in 2014.

"Karzai will meet the prime minister, members of parliament, foreign secretary and defence secretary," Heravi said Sunday.

Karzai would also inaugurate a major exhibition of Afghan artefacts at the British Museum in London. The exhibition is going to be open to the public on Thursday.

Many of the artefacts at the British Museum show have been saved from several decades of civil war and Taliban rule, which saw important parts of Afghanistan's cultural heritage destroyed.

This included the giant Bamiyan Buddhas in central Afghanistan which were blown up by the Taliban in 2001.
Britain has around 9,500 troops in Afghanistan, according to the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), mainly in the troubled south.

That makes it the second largest contributor to the international force fighting the Taliban and other insurgents after the United States.

Over 350 British troops have died in Afghanistan since 2001, when the Taliban were ousted from power by a US-led invasion.

Cameron said last year that all British combat troops will be out of Afghanistan before the end of 2015.

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