Kerry, Karzai display unity; Karzai says he was misinterpreted

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Associated Press

Posted on March 25, 2013 at 12:33 PM

Updated Monday, Mar 25 at 1:01 PM

KABUL (AP) — On a day when the U.S. gave up control of its last detention facility in Afghanistan, Secretary of State John Kerry and Afghan President Hamid Karzai are making a show of unity.

Kerry, in Afghanistan for an unannounced visit, said he and Karzai are "on the same page" when it comes to peace talks with the Taliban. And he praised what he said was Afghanistan's commitment to "safe, secure" and transparent elections, scheduled for April 2014.

Karzai, meanwhile, says his recent comments that made officials in Washington so angry had been misinterpreted by the media.

Karzai had accused Washington of colluding with Taliban insurgents to keep Afghanistan weak, even as the Obama administration moved ahead with plans to hand off security responsibility to Afghan forces.

After meeting with Kerry, Karzai also defended allegations he has made about American troops abusing Afghan civilians, saying the comments weren't meant to "offend" anyone, but simply to protect his people.

%@AP Links

176-a-07-(Secretary of State John Kerry, at joint news conference with Afghan President Hamid Karzai)-"the president's explanation"-Secretary of State John Kerry says he's confident that Afghan President Hamid Karzai was misunderstood when he accused the U.S. of colluding with Taliban insurgents to keep Afghanistan weak. (25 Mar 2013)

<<CUT *176 (03/25/13)>> 00:07 "the president's explanation"

177-a-11-(Secretary of State John Kerry, at joint news conference with Afghan President Hamid Karzai)-"to make peace"-Secretary of State John Kerry says he and Afghan President Hamid Karzai are 'on the same page' when it comes to peace talks with the Taliban. (25 Mar 2013)

<<CUT *177 (03/25/13)>> 00:11 "to make peace"

APPHOTO WX819: Secretary of State John Kerry listens as Afghan President Hamid Karzai speaks during their joint news conference at the presidential palace in Kabul, Monday, March 25, 2013. Kerry and Karzai made a show of unity Monday, shortly after the U.S. military ceded control of its last detention facility in Afghanistan, ending a longstanding irritant in relations between the two countries. Kerry, in Afghanistan for an unannounced visit, said he and Karzai were "on the same page" when it comes to peace talks with the Taliban. (AP Photo/Jason Reed, Pool) (25 Mar 2013)

<<APPHOTO WX819 (03/25/13)>>

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