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Ten years ago the US army removed the Taliban from power in Afghanistan, and by 2014 foreign troops are expected to be gone from the country.
Breaking with its violent past is expected to be Afghanistan's biggest challenge this year, but by no means its only one.
The government will have to plan for possible talks with the Taliban, who have re-emerged as a powerful force, as well as take on more responsibility for security.
It also needs to put necessary economic and political reforms in place before the country is able to fully stand on its own.
Al Jazeera's Jennifer Glasse reports from Kabul.