US yet to decide on post-2014 troop size
WASHINGTON (PAN): The Pentagon on Tuesday said that no decision had been taken so far on the number of US troops staying in Afghanistan after 2014, when all combat soldiers of the NATO-led force are to leave the country.
“No final decisions have been made,” Pentagon Press Secretary George Little said, adding that US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta had not spoken to President, Barack Obama on the issues so far.
He said the Department of Defense was in consultations with the White House on enduring presence numbers as well as the so-called glide slope between now and the end of 2014. The discussions are ongoing. Panetta had not spoken with Obama on the subject, he added.
“I don't believe the secretary and the president have spoken directly about this issue, but I'm sure that the secretary hopes to do so soon,” Little continued. Also, no decision has been taken on timeline of the withdrawal of the rest of the 66,000 US troops stationed in Afghanistan.
The spokesman said: “There's a lot of work being done right now. I wouldn't suggest in any way the shape or form that we're not analysing what the potential options might be, and offering those up ultimately to the president…”
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