Pentagon urges Karzai to sign troop plan quickly

Updated at: 11/26/2013 1:35 AM
By PAULINE JELINEK

(AP) WASHINGTON - The Pentagon is urging Afghan President Hamid Karzai to quickly sign a long-delayed security agreement that would keep some U.S. troops in the country after most foreign forces draw down in 2014.

The Afghan leader is insisting that the winner of the country’s April 5 election be the one to sign the deal _ despite a vote Sunday by an Afghan assembly to go ahead with the agreement.

Col. Steven Warren, a Defense Department spokesman, said Monday that it’s very difficult for the U.S. to plan troop movements if the deal is not sealed by year’s end.

Warren told reporters the Pentagon hopes he signs the agreement "as quickly as possible."

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