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Military Working On Slower Afghan Pullout Than Originally Sought By Trump

Source: Washington Post

January 09 2019


Plans to reduce the number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan are likely to fall short of the withdrawal initially demanded by President Trump, reports the Washington Post.

Military officials have worked to convince Trump that a smaller, slower pullout better serves U.S. interests, said U.S. officials.

In December, Trump ordered the Pentagon to plan to withdraw up to half of the approximately 14,000 troops now in Afghanistan. Officials said the plan, which is still being developed, could reduce U.S. forces by about half of the 7,000 the president originally sought.

This would result in nearly the full withdrawal of the 3,900-troop increase Trump authorized in August 2017.

Officials emphasized that the final decision rests with the president, who could change his mind at any time.

On Monday, military officials said that no new orders had been given for operations in Afghanistan.

In the meantime, U.S. diplomatic and military officials have sought to reassure Afghan and allied officials of Washington's continuing commitment. 

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