Gingrich slams Obama Quran burning apology

 Republican White House hopeful Newt Gingrich has expressed outrage over President Barack Obama's decision to apologise to his Afghan counterpart Hamid Karzai over Quran burning.

"It is an outrage that President Obama is the one apologising to Afghan President Karzai on the same day two American troops were murdered and four others injured by an Afghan soldier.

"It is Hamid Karzai who owes the American people an apology, not the other way around," Gingrich, the former Speaker of the US House of Representatives said.
"This destructive double standard whereby the United States and its democratic allies refuse to hold accountable leaders who tolerate systematic violence and oppression in their borders must come to an end," said Gingrich, the leading Republican presidential candidate.

Earlier in the day, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said Obama apologised to Karzai in a letter over the burning of the Quran at at Bagaram air base and added that no politics should be seen into it.

"The President, following up on a telephone conversation, the likes of which he has routinely with President Karzai, wrote a long letter on a variety of issues related to our bilateral engagement, including reconciliation, including the trilateral talks between -- with Pakistan last week in Islamabad.

"... he also expressed his condolences and -- or rather, his apology for the inadvertent burning of religious materials by American personnel in Afghanistan," he said.

The White House Press Secretary justified the decision of Obama in this regard.
"One of the reasons that it’s appropriate to express our sincere apologies for this incident is that the kind of reaction that it can cause risks putting our men and women in harm’s way, or in further risk than they already are," he said, adding that there is a precedent to this.

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