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The United States Senate


Mr. BURNS. I ask unanimous consent the Senate now proceed to consideration of S. Res. 152, which was submitted earlier today.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will report the resolution by title.

The assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

A resolution (S. Res. 152) welcoming His Excellency Hamid Karzai, the President of Afghanistan, and expressing support for a strong enduring strategic partnership between the United States and Afghanistan.

There being no objection, the Senate proceeded to consider the resolution.

Mr. BURNS. I ask unanimous consent the resolution be agreed to, the preamble be agreed to, and the motion to reconsider be laid upon the table.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.

The resolution (S. Res. 152) was agreed to.

The preamble was agreed to.

The resolution, with its preamble, reads as follow:

S. RES. 152

Whereas Afghanistan has suffered the ravages of war, foreign occupation, and oppression;

Whereas following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the United States launched Operation Enduring Freedom, which helped to establish an environment in which the people of Afghanistan are building the foundations for a democratic government;

Whereas, on January 4, 2004, the Constitutional Loya Jirga of Afghanistan adopted a constitution that provides for equal rights for full participation of women, mandates full compliance with international norms for human and civil rights, establishes procedures for free and fair elections, creates a system of checks and balances between the executive, legislative, and judicial branches, encourages a free market economy and private enterprise, and obligates the state to prevent terrorist activity and the production and trafficking of narcotics;

Whereas, on October 9, 2004, approximately 8,400,000 Afghans, including nearly 3,500,000 women, voted in Afghanistan's first direct Presidential election at the national level, demonstrating commitment to democracy, courage in the face of threats of violence, and a deep sense of civic responsibility;

Whereas, on December 7, 2004, Hamid Karzai took the oath of office as the first democratically elected President in the history of Afghanistan;

Whereas nationwide parliamentary elections are planned in Afghanistan for September 2005, further demonstrating the Afghan people's will to live in a democratic state, and the commitment of the Government of Afghanistan to democratic norms;

Whereas the Government of Afghanistan is committed to halting the cultivation and trafficking of narcotics and has pursued, in cooperation with the United States and its allies, a wide range of counter-narcotics initiatives;

Whereas the United States and the international community are working to assist Afghanistan's counter-narcotics campaign by supporting programs to provide alternative livelihoods for farmers, sustainable economic development, and capable Afghan security forces; and

Whereas, on March 17, 2005, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said of Afghanistan ``this country was once a source of terrorism; it is now a steadfast fighter against terrorism. There could be no better story than the story of Afghanistan in the last several years and there can be no better story than the story of American and Afghan friendship. It is a story of cooperation and friendship that will continue. We have a long-term commitment to this country'': Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the Senate--

(1) welcomes, as an honored guest and valued friend of the United States, President Hamid Karzai on the occasion of his visit to the United States as the first democratically elected President of Afghanistan scheduled for May 21 through 25, 2005;

(2) supports a democratic, stable, and prosperous Afghanistan as essential to the security of the United States; and

(3) supports a strong and enduring strategic partnership between the United States and Afghanistan as a primary objective of both countries to advance their shared vision of peace, freedom, security and broad-based economic development in Afghanistan, the broader South Asia region, and throughout the world.



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