May 7 - Afghan President Karzai says the strategic pact sealed by U.S. President Obama is at risk of becoming ''meaningless'' if Afghans do not feel safe. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
Civilians at risk in Afghanistan. Last year the number of civilian causalities in Afghanistan hit a record according to the U.N.,, mostly at the hands of insurgents. But in recent days the focus has been on civilian deaths caused by NATO airstrikes. Now Afghan president Hamid Karzai has summoned U.S. General John Allen the commander of NATO forces in Afghanistan to his palace to discuss the civilian deaths, a longstanding thorn in ties between Karzai and his Western backers. The palace released a statement saying that if Afghans do not feel safe, a strategic pact signed with the U.S. will be quote "meaningless." Last week Obama swooped into Afghanistan for the one-year anniversary of Osama bin Laden's death to sign the strategic partnership agreement. The deal aims to provide Afghans with reassurances that they will not be abandoned when most NATO combat troops leave as planned in 2014. Deborah Lutterbeck, Reuters.