Belgian PM in Afghanistan
Belgian Prime Minister Herman Van Rompuy on Monday held talks with Afghan President Hamid Karzai during a previously unannounced visit to Kabul.
KABUL - Van Rompuy and Karzai convened a joint press conference that was broadcast live on Afghan television from the presidential palace in the capital.
Karzai started the briefing by thanking Belgium for supporting reconstruction in Afghanistan after the 2001 US-led invasion ousted the extremist Taliban regime.
High-profile visits to Afghanistan are largely kept secret for security reasons, with a Taliban-led insurgency gaining pace in recent years.
Belgium contributes about 450 troops to the Nato-led International Security Assistance Force that is helping the Afghan government to fight the insurgency while building its own security forces.
ISAF currently numbers 58,390 soldiers from nearly 40 nations, according to its website.