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Obama phones Karzai, discusses troop pullback call

3 years ago Friday, March 16, 2012 9:41:38 AM CDT March 16, 2012 Friday, March 16 2012 Mar 16, 2012 in News
Source: Associated Press

ABOARD AIR FORCE ONE - President Obama has telephoned Afghan President Hamid Karzai to discuss Karzai's call for NATO troops to withdraw from rural villages.

Spokesman Jay Carney says that during the early-morning call, the leaders agreed to talk further about the demand. Karzai has told reporters in Afghanistan he's standing firm. If so, that throws a wrench in the current U.S. strategy.

Carney says the leaders reaffirmed their "shared commitment" to a gradual transition to an Afghan combat lead next year. He was briefing reporters as Obama flew to a fundraising appearance.

Karzai's demand followed the weekend massacre of 16 Afghans. The suspect is a U.S. soldier who was stationed at a rural outpost.

Karzai's demand sowed confusion among U.S. officials, but Carney says the two leaders are "very much on the same page."

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