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Bush Increases Aid for Afghanistan - 2001-12-12


President Bush has signed legislation extending and strengthening U-S aid to Afghanistan as winter approaches the war-torn country.

Putting the final touch on the Afghan women and children relief act of 2001 in Washington today (Wednesday), Mr. Bush said the legislation provides for continued education and medical assistance for Afghan women, children and refugees. The bill contains no dollar figures, but underscores America's intention to help.

Mr. Bush said the Taleban's "brutal" war with its people, particularly the nation's women, is coming to an end.

President Bush said the legislation sends a clear message that as the U-S-led war in Afghanistan drives out the Taleban and the terrorists, America stands ready to lift up the people of Afghanistan. He says the Afghan people" have suffered enough."

President Bush reiterated America's strong objection to what he called the "Taleban way" (of life), citing its brutality toward women and children. Mr. Bush said the Taleban attitude is, in his words, "wrong for any culture or any religion."

Mr. Bush pledged that America and its allies will do their part in re-building Afghanistan, and he said the parties will not leave until the mission is complete.

He also said he is pleased Afghanistan's interim administration -- due to take power on December 22nd -- has pledged to respect the rights of all people. And he noted that two women were included in the transitional administration recently agreed to in Bonn, Germany.

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