LONDON: British Prime Minister Gordon Brown welcomed Thursday Afghan President Hamid Karzai's swearing-in for a second term, but now wants to see him "deliver for all Afghans," a spokesman said.
"His speech this morning offers hope for the Afghan people," said the Downing Street spokesman, noting its emphasis on tackling corruption and improving governance, while reaching out to defeated candidates.
"We believe that Karzai set out today a clear commitment to deliver in the areas which (Brown) highlighted as being crucial for the new government to tackle," he added.
But he stressed: "There are very clear expectations of Karzai's second term on the part of the entire international community. We now want to see Karzai deliver for all Afghans, and we will work with him to ensure that he does."
The comments came after Karzai was sworn in for a second term in Kabul, vowing to combat corruption, bring security and reach out to his chief rival Abdullah Abdullah and fellow presidential hopeful, Ashraf Ghani.
Foreign Secretary David Miliband, who was in Kabul for the inauguration, notably welcomed a Karzai pledge on Afghan forces progressively taking over responsibility from NATO-led troops.
"Obviously what matters to us is turning words into deeds. I think we have a very clear set of commitments now and what matters is that the Afghan government sticks to them," he told Sky News television.
"I think it's very significant. He said in the space of three years he'll want to take Afghan security leadership in significant parts of the country," he added.
"Kabul... is already governed or led in security terms by the Afghan security forces. We need to see that process happening in other parts of the country," he said.
British Prime Minister Gordon Brown offered Monday to host an international conference on Afghanistan in London in January, which he said could set a timeframe for a gradual security handover from 2010 to Afghan forces.
A British soldier was killed in southern Afghanistan Wednesday, bringing the country's death toll there to 235 since the US-led invasion in 2001 to oust the Taliban regime.