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Tuesday, December 8, 2009     GET REAL

U.S. asks Gulf states for help in Afghanistan

WASHINGTON — The United States has approached the Gulf Arab states for assistance in the NATO stabilization campaign in Afghanistan.   

Officials said the administration of President Barack Obama has turned to several Gulf Cooperation Council states to consider contributions to the NATO surge in Afghanistan. They said GCC states could send money and troops for reconstruction and education projects.

"I think one of the things that we must continue to try to change as much as we can is to increase the degree of civilian presence," National Security Advisor James Jones said.

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At a Dec. 7 news conference, Jones said the GCC could contribute both military and civilian personnel for Afghanistan and Pakistan.

He cited irrigation and other agriculture projects in Afghanistan that contain a foreign presence.

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