Obama warns Karzai that US will pull troops from Afghanistan

Associated Press

WASHINGTON

In a blunt warning to Afghan President Hamid Karzai, President Barack Obama threatened Tuesday to withdraw all U.S. troops from Afghanistan by the end of this year if a crucial security pact isn’t signed — and he ordered the Pentagon to accelerate planning for just that scenario.

At the same time, in a rare phone call with Karzai, Obama indicated he was willing to wait his mercurial counterpart out and sign a security agreement with a new Afghan president after April elections.

That would allow the U.S. to keep as many as 10,000 troops in the country.

The effort seemed aimed at marginalizing Karzai’s role in the high-stakes negotiations over the future of the lengthy American-led war.

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