Saturday, May 15, 2010
Prime Minister David Cameron will reaffirm the British Government's commitment to building a stable and secure future for Afghanistan as he meets the country's president at Chequers.
Downing Street said Hamid Karzai's stopover in the UK on his way back from Washington is "an opportunity for early discussions" following on from previous meetings when Mr Cameron was leader of the opposition.
Afghanistan was top of the agenda on Friday when Foreign Secretary William Hague met US secretary of state Hillary Clinton in Washington.
Mr Hague said Mr Cameron is making Afghanistan "our top priority in foreign affairs", adding: "We will give the Nato strategy and the agreements made at the London Conference the time and support to succeed."
Mrs Clinton said Mr Hague had reaffirmed the UK's commitment to working with the international community and the Afghan people to achieve long-term stability in Afghanistan.
She said: "The US is deeply appreciative of the British contribution in Afghanistan and we honour the sacrifices of the British service members who serve their country with such distinction overseas."
The UK and US are "firmly committed" to the Nato mission and support the efforts of Mr Karzai to fight corruption and build a stable and strong government, she said.
Mr Cameron will use Saturday's meeting to prepare the ground for the Kabul Conference on July 20, which will assess the progress made since the London Conference in January, which agreed international support to train and expand the Afghan army and security forces with the aim of starting the handover of the country to local authorities by the end of this year.
The London Conference also set Mr Karzai tough goals to tackle corruption within the country's administration.