Karzai refuses to end private security ban despite cash loss threat

Kabul, Oct. 25 (ANI): Afghan President Hamid Karzai is standing by his decree to dissolve the private security companies some aid organizations use for protection, although a delegation of Western diplomats warned Sunday that huge amounts of aid and development money could be affected.Several international aid organizations are drawing up plans to withdraw from Afghanistan, worried about the ability of Afghan security forces to protect their staffs, potentially taking with them billions of dollars in development cash as well as jobs for ordinary Afghans, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Western officials warned Karzai in the Sunday meeting that the cash these development organizations manage will not start flowing directly to the Afghan government if they leave, said people familiar with the discussion.Karzai said he plans to move ahead with the private-security ban, which he outlined in August, setting a four-month implementation deadline.

"The Government of Afghanistan is [determined] to disband the private security companies, and therefore, asks our international partners for practical and sincere cooperation," Karzai said at Sunday's meeting, according to a statement from his office.Karzai has accused private security companies of causing civilian casualties and of corruption.

He asked the international delegation that visited him Sunday to provide a list of the big development projects that need security, according to the statement. (ANI)

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