Britainis PM: Ex-Afghan insurgents can win role in country's future

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December 12, 2007 16:47

 
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British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said Wednesday that Taliban fighters in Afghanistan can win a role in the country's future if they renounce violence, and he pledged a long-term troop presence. Brown told lawmakers that Britain would support efforts by Afghan President Hamid Karzai to bring former insurgents into mainstream politics. "If they are prepared to renounce violence and abide by the constitution and respect basic human rights then there is a place for them in the legitimate society and economy of Afghanistan," Brown told the House of Commons. He said Britain would not hold direct talks with ex-Taliban fighters, but would support the attempts by Karzai's officials to widen Afghanistan's political sphere.

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