October 5, 2014 / 3:24 PM / 3 years ago

Afghanistan to allow return of expelled NYT reporter

KABUL (Reuters) - Afghanistan’s new government will allow a New York Times journalist who was expelled in August to return and resume work in the country, the newspaper said Sunday.

New York Times reporter Matthew Rosenberg, 40, speaks during an interview in Kabul August 20, 2014. REUTERS/Mohammad Ismail

The expulsion of Matthew Rosenberg, a veteran Kabul correspondent, was reversed in an order by the Afghan attorney general’s office and confirmed by a spokesman for new President Ashraf Ghani, a New York Times article said.

The reversal represented another sign that Ghani wants to move swiftly to repair relations with the United States that were damaged by his predecessor, longtime leader Hamid Karzai.

Ghani was sworn into office on Monday after ending a contentious election crisis by forming a unity government with his rival, Abdullah Abdullah.

The next day, a Ghani representative signed long-delayed security pacts with the U.S. and NATO to allow about 10,000 foreign troops to stay on in a training role after the official conclusion to the U.S.-led combat mission at the end of the year. Karzai had refused to sign the agreements.

Karzai’s government ordered Rosenberg, a U.S. citizen, expelled over an article he wrote quoting unnamed sources that insiders in his government were making plans for an interim government if the election standoff between Ghani and Abdullah were not resolved.

No other correspondents were affected.

Reporting by Kay Johnson; Editing by Stephen Powell

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