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Karzai adviser says most Afghans want security pact keeping US forces in country indefinitely
QUANTICO, Va. (AP) ' A senior adviser to Afghan President Hamid Karzai says most Afghans want a binding security pact with the United States that would keep American troops in Afghanistan indefinitely.
Minister-counselor Taj Ayubi (aye-YOU'-bee) told an audience at Marine Corps University that a deal would strengthen Afghanistan and U.S. military help is needed after 2014, when the formal combat role is set to end.
The agreement would give the U.S. use of Afghan-run or jointly run bases after 2014. Senior U.S. officials have said its central function is to provide assurance to Afghans that the U.S. will not shut the door on Afghanistan in 2014, while establishing terms for continued U.S. counterterrorism, training and counter-narcotics operations.
U.S. officials stress that U.S. military presence will be at Afghanistan's invitation.