Karzai Limits Foreign Airstrikes
Afghan leader says his troops can no longer request air support
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 16, 2013 9:28 AM CST
Afghan military officers listen to President Hamid Karzai's speech in Kabul, Afghanistan, Saturday.   (Ahmad Jamshid)

(Newser) – Afghan President Hamid Karzai said today he will issue a decree banning Afghan security forces from asking international troops to carry out airstrikes under "any circumstances." The announcement came amid anger over a joint Afghan-NATO operation this week that Afghan officials said killed 10 civilians, including women and children, in northeast Kunar province. Civilian deaths at the hands of foreign forces, in particular airstrikes, have been among the most divisive issues of the 11-year-old war.

"I will issue a decree tomorrow that no Afghan security forces, in any circumstances can ask for the foreigners' planes for carrying out operations on our homes and villages,'' Karzai said in a speech at the Afghan National Military Academy in Kabul. NATO has not formally responded yet. The Afghan military relies heavily on air support to gain advantage in the fight against militants, but Karzai said Afghan forces were ready to take over their own security. "We are happy that foreign forces are withdrawing from our country," he said. "We are happy for all their help and assistance so far, but we don't need foreign forces to defend our country."

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Showing 3 of 26 comments
Feb 17, 2013 9:56 AM CST
Oh fk this bastard Karzai! Thieving scumbag and his cronies have stolen millions from the foreign aid we give them. Afghan security forces should put a bullet up his ass since they're the ones asking for the airstrikes.
Feb 16, 2013 4:25 PM CST
I knew he was with the Taliban when I saw him address Congress....His drug cartels keep him going and our dollars he uses as toilet paper. 1942
Feb 16, 2013 3:52 PM CST
I would like to see us leave everywhere, mind our own business & let all of these countries fight amongst themselves. That's what they've done for thousands of years & will do for thousands more! The only thing that unites them is a common enemy, usually us!!! And we spend trillions of $$$ and lose our soldiers for nothing.