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US National Security Advisor Calls for Increased NATO Effort in Afghanistan

21 February 2007

President Bush's national security advisor has urged NATO members to increase spending on alliance efforts in Afghanistan, warning that a failure there would undermine European and U.S. security.

Stephen Hadley Wednesday told NATO officials in Brussels the failure of the alliance mission would be a tragedy because Afghanistan could once again become a safe haven for terrorism and narcotics trafficking.

He urged NATO members to step up spending and cooperation in achieving a common mission.

Hadley said the allies are working together to ensure that if there is an offensive in Afghanistan in coming months, it will be a NATO offensive against Taleban insurgents who are trying to regain power.

In Copenhagen, Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen said his country is considering boosting its contingent in Afghanistan by 200 troops to a total of about 600.

A NATO-led force of about 33,000 troops is in Afghanistan fighting a growing Taleban insurgency.

Hadley is expected to meet with his German and Russian counterparts in Berlin and Moscow later this week.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.


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