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US warns Afghanistan of civil war

by fwire  Dec 8, 2013 01:30 IST

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Kabul, Dec 8 (IANS) US special envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan James Dobbins has warned the Afghan government that failure to sign the Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) would lead to a civil war in Afghanistan, an official said Saturday.

"If the BSA (is) not signed, there will be no peace in Afghanistan... There will be a civil war in this country," the Afghan official quoted Dobbins as saying, Xinhua reported.

Dobbins met with Afghan President Hamid Karzai two days ago and the meeting ended up without any outcome, said the official who did not wish to be named.

The official said that Dobbins also stressed the "zero option", meaning if there is no BAS, there is no need for US military presence in Afghanistan.

Explaining Dobbins' remarks, the Afghan official said: "You can have good interpretation and bad interpretation also," stressing "it could be a threat".

Karzai has previously reiterated his preconditions for inking the controversial agreement, which include ending military operations in Afghan houses and starting a meaningful peace process in this war-hit nation.

A four-day Afghan Loya Jirga, or grand assembly of the elders and notables, attended by 2,500 people from across the country and concluded on Nov 27, endorsed BSA with Washington and urged President Karzai to ink it within this year.

However, Karzai said that the BSA would not be signed with the US by his government unless Washington meets all preconditions.

The White House has urged Kabul to ink BSA by the end of 2013, warning not inking the pact would affect US support for Afghanistan.

In spite of overwhelming support by Afghans including parliamentarians to early inking of the contentious security pact, Karzai has categorically pointed out that he is not in hurry to sign it.

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.