Sarko Stalwart Against Taliban

French president says he'll commit more troops to Afghan conflict
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 22, 2007 5:31 PM CST
Sarko Stalwart Against Taliban
French President Nicolas Sarkozy second from left, along with Afghan President Hamid Karzai inspects the guard of honor at Presidential Palace in Kabul, Afghanistan, Saturday, Dec 22, 2007. French President Sarkozy arrived in Kabul on Saturday to meet with his country's troops here and with Afghan...   (Associated Press)

Nicolas Sarkozy said today the international community must prevent Afghanistan from falling back under extremist rule, the BBC reports. The French president made a quick visit to Kabul to reaffirm his support for the US-led operation, saying France would commit more troops in the near future. France currently has about 1,300 troops in Afghanistan, mostly around Kabul.

"Here there is a war against terrorism, against fanaticism, that we cannot and must not lose," he said. "That is why it is important that we help with the emergence of an Afghan state that is legitimate, democratic and modern." Washington, although appreciative of Sarkozy’s enthusiasm, has urged France to redeploy its troops to the contested southern and eastern areas that have seen the Taliban resurgence. (More Afghanistan stories.)

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