Germany confident of good cooperation with Petraeus

24th June 2010, Comments 0 comments

Germany's foreign minister was tight-lipped Thursday over the sacking of US General Stanley McChrystal, but expressed hope that cooperation with the US in Afghanistan would continue smoothly.

"This is a decision of the US government," Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said of McChrystal's dismissal, during a visit to Sofia.

"What is important for us is that our commonly agreed policies (with Washington) continue, of which we have no doubts," he told journalists after meeting with his Bulgarian counterpart Nikolay Mladenov.

Germany's Defence Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg had offered spirited backing for McChrystal Wednesday, shortly before US President Barack Obama relieved the general of his duties over disparaging remarks in a magazine article.

Zu Guttenberg, whose country is the third biggest contributor of foreign troops in Afghanistan, had described McChrystal as "a guarantor of the new strategy in Afghanistan."

Nevertheless, Westerwelle insisted relations with General David Petraeus, who is due to take over the faltering NATO-led campaign in Afghanistan, were positive.

"We know (McChrystal's) successor, we have had an excellent cooperation with him up to now and I'm sure this will continue," he said.

© 2010 AFP

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