Arriving amid concerns over the Karzai’s anti-American rhetoric, The Guardian reports that the 24-hour visit to the Afghan capital of Kabul includes meeting with the president to discuss issues like Afghan reconciliation, and the transfer of security responsibility to Afghan forces and Afghanistan’s elections.
The US handed over control of the last detention center to Afghan forces earlier that same Monday, a year after the two sides first agreed on the transfer, according to USA Today.
This final transfer of power hopes to end the shaky relationship between the mercurial president and its US visitors. Karzai had previously demanded control of the jail as a matter of national sovereignty.
The Washington Post reports that the U.S. officials accompanying Kerry said he did not plan to lecture Karzai or dwell on the apparent animosity but instead would again make clear that the U.S. did not take such allegations lightly. They also said he would press Karzai on the need for upcoming May elections to meet international standards, while continuing to stress how imporant Afghan/US reconciliation is.
Kerry arrived in Kabul from Jordan, and had hoped also to travel to Pakistan on his trip to the region but put it off due to elections happening there. Instead, he met late Sunday in Amman with Pakistani army chief for Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, officials said.