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Saturday, 16 March, 2002, 16:59 GMT
US pledges books to Afghanistan

The US President, George W Bush, has pledged to send 10m textbooks and 20 teams of teacher trainers to Afghanistan to help rebuild the country's education system.

Mr Bush was speaking in his weekly radio address.

He said that in the project, America was placing its emphasis on education, saying this was the pathway to progress, particularly for women.

Most young Afghan girls were denied access to education under the former Taleban regime.

The US has just given 20,000 books housed in the American cultural centre in Kabul to the city's newly-refurbished university library.

The collection includes works of American literature and college text books.

It was transferred days before the new school year begins at the end of March.

President Bush said his personal appeal to American children to donate money for their Afghan counterparts had raised more than $4.5m that would go towards buying school supplies.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service

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