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The Hamilton Spectator
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Wednesday January 23, 2008
The Manley panel has recommended extending Canada's military mission in Afghanistan indefinitely, with a new emphasis on diplomacy, training and reconstruction.

The 90-page report released Tuesday doesn't put any time limit on ending the Canadian mission.

"The Canadian combat mission should conclude when the Afghan National Army is ready to provide security in Kandahar province," it said.

He told CTV Newsnet's Mike Duffy Live that Canada needs to pull its weight in the international community if it wants to have influence.

"Somebody once said we can't sit at the G8 table and every time the waiter comes with the bill excuse ourselves and go to the washroom," he said.

Manley noted, however, for the last couple of years, Canada has been "paying the bill" and should use its "voice" to argue for more troops.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper appointed the panel in October to consider at least four possible options for Canada's involvement in Afghanistan. A parliamentary vote on the mission's future is expected some time this spring.

Harper called the report "substantial,'' adding, "the government has every intention of looking at it carefully in detail." Source...

Manley wants mission extension with conditions
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