NATO hands over first Afghan area

NATO has handed over control of the central Afghan province of Ba­miyan to Afghan security forces, the BBC in­forms. It is the first of seven areas to be passed to local troops under a plan an­nounced by President Karzai in March. Ba­mi­yan has remained relatively peaceful but it is a poor pro­vince, heavily reliant on foreign aid. The hando­ver is seen as a critical step in a transition of power before foreign troops end combat operations in 2014.

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