WASHINGTON - The United States will not be able to provide any assistance to Afghanistan until the Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) between the two countries is signed, a top American senator has told President Hamid Karzai.
Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin conveyed this message to Karzai at a meeting in Kabul during his week-long trip to the country, the senator’s office said.
“I told President Karzai that we will not able to provide such assistance unless an acceptable Bilateral Security Agreement is reached in the near future and also stressed that his words have too often not been helpful to promote confidence between our countries,” Levin said.
The lawmaker added he was struck by positive changes in Afghanistan since he first started visiting the country about 12 years ago and how the improvement had accelerated in the last three years.
“Afghanistan is more secure, and of greatest importance perhaps, it is the Afghan Army and police who now have responsibility for preserving security and they are doing so far more successfully and quickly than many predicted,” Levin said.
“You see streets full of cars, new buildings going up, new universities (including the American University of Afghanistan, which we visited), and a high level of energy and engagement from the people of Afghanistan – including women, who had been completely excluded from public life by the Taliban,” he said.
“I believe that the continued assistance and engagement of the United States and other countries is warranted and will help preserve these achievements,” Levin said at the conclusion of his Afghan trip. (Pajhwok)