Saturday, November 21, 2009

Travel: Hillary Clinton attends Karzai's Inauguration in Afghanistan

On Thursday, November 19th, Secretary Clinton attended the Inauguration of President Karzai in Kabul.

According to the New York Times, many Afghans did not even bother to watch the inauguration on television, and those that did, had much criticism.

During Secretary Clinton's time in Afghanistan, she was also critical calling for President Hamid Karzai and his government to do a better job of cracking down on corruption in Afghanistan. Although on Wednesday evening the secretary of state congratulated him on his reelection during their meeting, also telling him “I’m very energized by being back here and seeing you and a lot of your ministers," apparently over dinner, and in a subsequent one-on-one session, Clinton pressed Karzai for tangible results in tackling other forms of corruption.

Of Secretary Clinton's concerns on corruption is the issue that Karzai named one of his two vice presidents, Marshal Muhammad Fahim, whom American officials believe has been involved in the drug trade, as well as forging a political alliance with General Abdul Rashid Dostum, a warlord suspected of corruption. On the matter she said, “It certainly raises questions.”

But she was also optomistic in her speeches saying that the inauguration provided a “window of opportunity” for Mr. Karzai to make a new compact with the people of Afghanistan and to create a more accountable government.

“We want to be a strong partner with the government and people of Afghanistan... This is a turning point that we will face together... It’s not all a one-sided negative story... It’s much more balanced than that. If President Karzai was sitting here, he would say ‘do you know how hard it’s been to do what I have done for the last eight years?’”
Aside from her meeting with Karzai and her time at the inauguration, the Secretary also held a press conference at the U.S. embassy in Kabul. Followed by posing for photos with the troops and signing autographs. SEE LOTS MORE PHOTOS AFTER THE JUMP!!

1 comment:

Jackie said...

Hillary looks georgeous.

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