German foreign minister calls for Afghan withdrawal plan

Berlin, Nov 16 (DPA) German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle called Sunday for preliminary work over the next four years towards laying down a plan to withdraw German troops from Afghanistan.

Speaking on ZDF television, he said, “In the life of this parliament, we have to get sufficiently far with the concept of self-sustained security that a perspective for withdrawal comes into view.”

Westerwelle, who took over the foreign ministry last month, added, “We don’t want to remain in Afghanistan forever.” He said Germany would work to see that democracy grew in Afghanistan and effective methods were introduced to fight corruption.

“That’s what we expect from the Afghan government,” Westerwelle said.