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Afghan president says civilian deaths could render US pact 'meaningless'

Police sources in Afghanistan's Badghis province say an overnight NATO air strike killed 14 civilians in the district of Balamurghab, Al Jazeera reported Monday.

Six other civilians were reportedly injured.

Meanwhile, military officials said Monday three NATO troops died in a blast in eastern Afghanistan. The nationality of the service members killed hasn't been made public yet.


Afghan President Hamid Karzai said on Monday that the strategic pact sealed by President Barack Obama last week was at risk of becoming "meaningless" if Afghans don't feel safe. His statement referred to recent civilian casualties by NATO.

Karzai called U.S. Gen. John Allen, commander of NATO forces in Afghanistan, and U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker, to the palace on Monday to discuss what he said were dozens of civilian casualties caused by NATO in four provinces since Sunday evening.

"Karzai signed the strategic pact with the United States to avoid such incidents (civilian casualties) and if Afghans do not feel safe, the strategic partnership loses its meaning," a presidential palace statement said.

President Obama goes to Afghanistan to sign post-war agreement

The Strategic Partnership Agreement spells out the U.S. relationship with Afghanistan beyond 2014, covering security, economics and governance. The deal is limited in scope and essentially gives both sides political cover: Afghanistan gets its sovereignty and a promise it won't be abandoned, while the U.S. gets to end its combat mission but keep a foothold in the country.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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