US Secretary of State John Kerry (image by Alberto Pizzoli/AFP/Getty)
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) - U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is in Afghanistan for urgent talks with Afghan President Hamid Karzai.
They will discuss a looming end of October deadline for completing a security deal to allow American troops to remain in Afghanistan after the end of the NATO-led military mission next year.
Kerry's unannounced visit to Kabul on Friday comes as talks on the Bilateral Security Agreement have foundered over issues of Afghan sovereignty despite a year of negotiations.
The U.S. wants a deal by the end of the month, but the discussions have stalled over Karzai's demand for American guarantees against future foreign intervention, a veiled reference to neighboring Pakistan. The U.S. wants any remaining troops to be able to conduct counterterrorism and counterinsurgency operations.
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)