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`US Not to Ask for Add`l Troop Deployment to Afghanistan`

`US Not to Ask for Add`l Troop Deployment to Afghanistan`

Posted October. 10, 2009 07:50,   


South Korean Ambassador to the U.S. Han Duck-soo said yesterday that Washington has not asked Seoul to dispatch additional troops to Afghanistan, adding no such a request will be made at a bilateral summit next month.

Han was speaking at the inspection session by the parliamentary committee on unification, foreign affairs and trade at the South Korean Embassy in Washington.

“In principle, the U.S. government wants each country to voluntarily support the stabilization and reconstruction of Afghanistan within their abilities,” he said.

“The (South) Korean government recognizes the need for stabilization and reconstruction of Afghanistan and a decision on additional support will be made after a comprehensive assessment of our available resources and conditions on the ground.”

He added, “(Giving assistance to Afghanistan) has nothing to do with the U.S. stance.”

On the prospects of a bilateral contact between the U.S. and North Korea, Han said, “The U.S. wants to hold substantial dialogue at the six-party talks, not in a bilateral meeting, so achieving bilateral contact will not be easy.

When asked when North Korea-U.S. talks could happen, he said, “Nobody knows.”

Turning to congressional ratification of the free trade agreement between Seoul and Washington, Han said, “The U.S. House of Representatives will begin a signing campaign to urge U.S. President Barack Obama to approve the agreement.”