Laura Bush, Afghan leader look to Paris

June 9, 2008 at 7:54 PM

KABUL, Afghanistan, June 9 (UPI) -- Afghan leaders will travel to a Paris meeting with a "very realistic" evaluation of achievements, Afghan President Hamid Karzai said Monday.

During a joint news conference in the Afghanistan capital of Kabul, Karzai and U.S. first lady Laura Bush discussed Thursday's International Conference in Support of Afghanistan. Representatives from about 80 countries and organizations involved in the rebuilding of Afghanistan will attend.

"We are going to the Paris conference with a very realistic evaluation of the past six years of our achievements, of our progress, of our problems, and with our objectives for the future," Karzai said.

During the event, Karzai said he would thank the international community for aiding Afghanistan, singling out Bush "for showing so much concern and assistance to Afghanistan."

When asked about allegations of corruption, Karzai said the issue is "something that we constantly discuss with each other."

Bush said she thought the question about corruption was "interesting" because "you said he would be getting a lot of criticism from the journalists."

When told the criticism could be from donors, Bush said, "You think the European donors are going to be criticizing, or you think it will just be the journalists?"

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