President Sarkozy has taken note of President Karzai’s announcements about the transition in Afghanistan.
He congratulates President Karzai and the Afghan government on these decisions, which are an important step in the transition process that will see Afghanistan take over full responsibility for security on her territory by 2014.
For France, the transfer of Kabul Province as a whole, and Surobi District in particular, is recognition of the progress made on the ground thanks to her forces’ action in conjunction with her allies and in support of the Afghan security forces.
This transfer will enable an extra 200 soldiers to return to France by the end of the year, in addition to the 200 who came back at the end of October.
In order to complete the transition in line with the aims agreed with our allies, France will remain fully engaged with her allies alongside the Afghan people.
France will shortly sign a friendship and cooperation treaty with Afghanistan, to complement the gradual withdrawal of her forces and a strengthening of civilian and reconstruction aid to the Afghan people./.