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Allies optimistic that Afghan strategy won't change

LONDON (AP) - America's allies in the fight to stabilize Afghanistan are hoping that even though Gen. Stanley McChrystal is leaving, his strategy will stay intact.

NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen says McChrystal's approach "is the right one" -- and that his strategy "continues to have NATO's support."

A British analyst agreed. Malcolm Chalmers says it's "not the time for a new commander to come in to rethink strategy."

British Prime Minister David Cameron, whose country has about 10,000 troops in Afghanistan, hasn't commented on the switch. But a lawmaker from his Conservative Party says he doubts that losing McChrystal will have a dramatic effect on British operations.

Afghan officials, meanwhile, are voicing relief at the choice of Gen. David Petraeus to replace McChrystal as the top U.S. and NATO commander. They say it's a sign that the U.S. strategy aimed at minimizing civilian casualties and bolstering the Afghan government would continue.


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