The United States Democratic presidential contender Barack Obama has arrived in Afghanistan, at the start of a campaign-season international tour.
The senator flew to the Afghan capital, Kabul, as part of an official congressional delegation.
Correspondents say Mr Obama is hoping to address security issues, which are seen as the weakest aspect of his presidential bid.
Opinion polls suggest Americans regard Republican candidate John McCain as a better potential commander-in-chief.
Mr Obama is also expected to visit Iraq next before travelling to Jordan, Israel, Germany, France and Britain.
"I want to talk to the commanders and get a sense, both in Afghanistan and in Baghdad of what their biggest concerns are. And I want to thank our troops for the heroic work that they've been doing," he said.