A steady stream of world leaders has visited Kabul ahead of the Christmas celebrations.
Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi was the most recent arrival, in Afghanistan for talks with President Hamid Karzai, and to visit Italian troops stationed in the country as part of the NATO mission.
He stayed for only a few hours but took the time to go to Herat in the west of the country where 2000 Italian soldiers are based.
Before him, the new Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd was also in Kabul to visit his troops, and to reassure President Karzai that he doesn’t intend to pull them out.
A few hours ahead of Rudd it was the turn of French President Nicolas Sarkozy. Before the French presidential election Sarkozy wouldn’t confirm that he would maintain France’s troop level in Afghanistan. But now he is even talking about sending reinforcements.