Britain’s prime minister popped over to Afghanistan on Thursday to declare that this year will be vital in the military campaign against the Taliban, but he ruled out any increase in British forces there. –JCL

The New York Times:.

Prime Minister David Cameron of Britain flew to Kabul, Afghanistan, on Thursday, saying this would be the “vital year” for the campaign against the Taliban.

“This is the year when we have to make progress — progress for the sake of the Afghan people, but progress also on behalf of people back at home who want this to work,” Mr. Cameron said.

He said an increase in the number of British troops in Afghanistan, now about 10,000, was “not remotely on the U.K. agenda.” He made clear that Britain’s goal was to hand over security responsibilities to Afghan forces as soon as possible.

At a news conference with the Afghan president, Hamid Karzai, Mr. Cameron said, “No one wants British troops to stay in Afghanistan for a day longer than is necessary.”

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