Obama, Karzai to meet in Washington on Friday

President Barack Obama will host Afghan President Hamid Karzai (HAH'-mihd KAHR'-zeye) at the White House on Friday.

It's the first in-person meeting for the two leaders since Obama won re-election. His victory meant the continuation of his administration's plans to bring the U.S.-led war in Afghanistan to a close by the end of 2014.

The White House says Obama and Karzai will discuss the next phases of the U.S. transition out of Afghanistan. Obama is expected soon to decide what the U.S. role in Afghanistan will be after 2014.

Obama faces pressure from Democrats and even some Republicans to wind down the war more quickly, while the military wants to avoid a too-fast pullout that might squander hard-won gains.

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