Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard reached Kabul today on an unscheduled visit to Afghanistan on her way back from the G-20 summit in Cannes. She met Afghan President Hamid Karzai and expressed his country’s desire to stay engaged in Afghanistan in a spirit of friendship in long term.
According to media reports Ms Gillard inaugurated the new Australian embassy building in Kabul and praised the staff for their work in dangerous conditions.
Australian Prime Minister visited Tarin Kowt in Uruzgan province and met with Australian soldiers posted there. Around 1,550 Australian soldiers are stationed in Afghanistan under the NATO command.
Gillard’s visit came just days after three Australian soldiers were killed when an Afghan soldier opened fire at a base in southern Kandahar province. Berore leaving for Kabul she also held talks with coalition commanders and local Afghan officials.