Silver Lining

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Students stage anti-US rally in western Afghanistan

Press TV

Hundreds of angry students have staged a massive rally in the central-western province of Ghour, calling on the Afghan government to cancel a planned security deal with the United States.

Local Afghan security officials say a large number of protestors poured onto streets of the city of Cheghcheran, chanting anti-American slogans and torching American flags and effigies of US President Barack Obama.

Eyewitnesses say things turned violent after the furious demonstrators marched towards the camp of Spanish troops in the area and set fire to a number of tents. At least three protesters were injured in the violent clashes with Afghan security forces.

The demonstrators said a security treaty between Washington and Kabul will pave the way for a prolonged US military presence in Afghanistan.

Washington had promised to withdraw all combat forces from Afghanistan by 2014. However, it has been locked in tricky negotiations with Kabul over a strategic partnership beyond 2014.

In May, Afghan President Hamid Karzai said his government was ready to let the US set up nine bases across Afghanistan after most foreign troops withdraw in 2014.

Many Afghans believe that the US is envisaging permanent military bases there.

Afghan political groups have warned that things will get worse should the US set up permanent military bases in Afghanistan.

Afghan political figures have also heaped scorn on the US-led forces for committing unforgivable crimes against Afghan women and children since invading the country in 2001.

Thousands of Afghan civilians, including a large number of women and children, have been killed during night raids by foreign forces and CIA-run assassination drone strikes.

The increasing number of casualties in Afghanistan has caused widespread anger against the US and other NATO member states.

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