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6 Aug, 2007 02:28

Russia writes off majority of Afghanistan's debt

Russia is about to write off up to 90% of Afghanistan's debt. An agreement is expected to be signed later on Monday when the country's finance minister visits Moscow.

Afghanistan owes Russia some $ US 11 BLN most of which is for arms supplies.

The debt relief was agreed within the framework of the Paris Club Creditors in exchange for enhanced trade and economic relations with the creditor-countries.

This initiative is aimed at helping Afghanistan to develop a sustainable economy.

Meanwhile, Afghan President Hamid Karzai is visiting the United States.

On Sunday afternoon Karzai arrived at the Camp David retreat in Maryland for a two-day meeting with U.S. President George W. Bush.

Monday's talks between the two leaders are expected to focus on the search for the al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, who's believed to be hiding in Pakistan near the Afghan border.

Increasing violence in Afghanistan and the threat from Taliban militants are also likely to be high on the summit's agenda.