Security Transfer Agreement Reached for Afghan Province

Afghan forces will take control


U.S. military leaders reached a deal with Afghan officials that calls for a gradual transition of security responsibilities in a volatile eastern province from American special forces to Afghan troops, officials from both sides announced Wednesday.

The arrangement aims to defuse a dispute triggered by accusations from President Hamid Karzai that U.S. troops were responsible for abductions and human rights abuses in Wardak province.

Tense relations between Kabul and Washington became further strained by Karzai's recent claims that American special forces and U.S.-trained Afghan local police had kidnapped nine villagers fromNerkh district in Wardak, located just west of Kabul, the capital, and had mutilated the body of another villager from a different provincial district after killing him.