US Seeking Strategic Deal with Afghanistan before NATO Summit in Chicago
TEHRAN (FNA)- An Afghan political analyst said that the White House is making an instrumental use of the NATO member states to pressure Kabul to accelerate the endorsement of a strategic deal between Afghanistan and the US before the upcoming NATO summit in Chicago.
"The US is seeking to make an instrumental use of the NATO summit in Chicago in May which is due to discuss security conditions in Afghanistan and NATO members' cooperation with Afghanistan," Head of Afghanistan's Research and Strategy Center Gholam Jilani Zawak told FNA on Monday.
"The Chicago summit is a means of exerting pressures on the NATO members to use make them act against the Afghan government's resistance to the endorsement of the strategic deal," he added.
"The US is trying to impose its conditions on Afghanistan and increase its pressures and threats on the Afghan government," Zawak noted.
Meantime, Afghan President Hamid Karzai said Wednesday that NATO has urged Afghanistan to accelerate the signing of a strategic partnership deal with the US in the wake of deadly protests over the burning of the Holy Quran.
NATO secretary general Anders Fogh Rasmussen made the appeal in a telephone call to Karzai, Karzai's office said.
In response, the Afghan president said he was willing to sign the long-term agreement but reiterated that it would only be done under certain conditions.
These include a respect for Afghan national sovereignty, an end to night raids by international forces and the handing over of the Bagram prison - known as Afghanistan's Guantanamo Bay - to Afghan control, Karzai said in a statement.
Rasmussen had said the signing of the partnership deal, which covers relations with the US after it withdraws its combat troops in 2014, would make a "good impact" on the Chicago conference on Afghanistan in May.