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Obama Meets With Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari And Afghan President Hamid Karzai

By JULIE PACE 05/21/12 04:54 PM ET AP

Obama Zardari Karzai
From left, President Barack Obama, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Afghan President Hamid Karzai, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari talk during a family picture of NATO leaders at the NATO Summit in Chicago, Monday, May 21, 2012. (AP Photo/Philippe Wojazer, Pool)

CHICAGO — President Barack Obama says the U.S. is making "diligent progress" on re-opening supply routes from Pakistan to Afghanistan.

Obama and Afghanistan's President Hamid Karzai spoke briefly with Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari on the sidelines of the NATO summit Monday. U.S. officials had indicated Obama would not hold a formal bilateral meeting with Zardari as long as the supply route matter remained unresolved.

The U.S. and Pakistan are in a dispute over Pakistan's closure of key trucking routes used to send supplies to NATO troops in Afghanistan. Pakistan closed the supply lines after a U.S. airstrike killed two dozen Pakistani soldiers.

Obama says Zardari told him these issues could get "worked through."

Obama says NATO is unified on a plan to responsibly wind down war in Afghanistan.

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A soldier of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) walks at the site of a suicide attack in front of a guesthouse in Kabul on May 2, 2012. (SHAH MARAI/AFP/GettyImages)

Afghanistan is a top priority on the Chicago Summit agenda. NATO plans to complete its ISAF mission by the end of 2014 with a transition that involves moving security responsibility from ISAF forces to full Afghan leadership. NATO also has invited Pakistan to the summit in hopes of convincing its leaders to reopen its border to NATO troop supplies. The border was closed permanently following a NATO-led airstrike on a Pakistani army checkpoint near the Afghan border that killed 24 soldiers in 2011.


Filed by Ryan Craggs  |