Canada firm on quitting Afghanistan by 2011

The Americans may have shown renewed interest in Afghanistan but Canada stays firm on its decision to end its mission in the war-torn country by 2011, says Canada’s new foreign minister Lawrence Cannon. The minister told a television channel Sunday that the tough stand by US president-elect Barack Obama on Afghanistan will have no impact on the Canadian decision to pull out of Afghanistan by 2011.

During the US presidential campaign, Obama promised to send two more US brigades to Afghanistan to go after the Al Qaeda and its leader Osama bin Laden.

“While we welcome the Americans’ renewed interest in Afghanistan, particularly president-elect Obama’s position during the campaign, we nonetheless want to make it perfectly clear that the US position will not change Canada’s position as defined in our parliamentary resolution,” the Canadian foreign minister said.

“We will be pulling out our military forces in 2011 and this is quite clear,” he reiterated.

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