KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) - The Afghan president says he will extend a Dec. 17 deadline for private security firms to disband by at least two months.
A statement issued by President Hamid Karzai's office says he will set up a committee to review the decree.
The committee will prepare a timetable for the closure of the firms and submit it to the President on Nov. 15. After its approval, private security firms will have a maximum of 90 days to close.
The firms were supposed to shut by Dec 17. The ban had threatened development and reconstruction work worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
Agencies say they would be unable to insure their workers if they had to replace private security contractors with Afghanistan's poorly trained armed forces.