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Afghanistan Focus of NATO Summit

Washington, DC
Monday, May 21, 2012

The President wrapped up a long weekend of international diplomacy with a closing news conference Monday at the NATO Summit. Earlier in the day, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen also addressed the news media.

In his remarks, the President said NATO is unified on a plan to wind down the war in Afghanistan. President Obama also said the U.S. is “making diligent progress” on re-opening supply routes from Pakistan to Afghanistan.  

Other topics of discussion included the Eurozone crisis, terrorism in Yemen and the 2012 Presidential campaign.  

Earlier on Monday, the NATO Secretary General said that the international allies remain committed to a secure and democratic Afghanistan and there would be a NATO-led presence in the country past 2014 to advise, assist and train Afghan forces. 

Also on Monday, the NATO chief said he’s optimistic that Pakistan will reopen key transit routes to Afghanistan in the “very near future”.  

Much of the NATO conference focused on Afghanistan. NATO forces will continue to draw down in that country while gradually handing power over to the Afghan National Security Forces.

President Obama met with Afghan President Hamid Karzai before the summit began and flew to Afghanistan earlier this month to sign a new agreement between the U.S. and Afghanistan.

The NATO Summit took place in President Obama's hometown of Chicago. Prior to the NATO meetings, the President hosted G8 leaders at the Presidential Retreat, Camp David, on Friday and Saturday.

Updated: Friday, June 22, 2012 at 10:01am (ET)

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