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US may pull over 1000 troops out of Afghanistan

US may pull over 1000 troops out of Afghanistan

Feb 16, 2019 - 13:13

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): The United States may withdraw more than 1,000 soldiers from Afghanistaninfo-icon even before a peace deal is reached with the Talibaninfo-icon, a top American general suggests.

General Joseph Votel, the Central Command chief, said in an interview the decision to reduce some of the 14,000 US forces in Afghanistan was not linked to the ongoing peace negotiations.

Speaking to Reuters, Votel said the trimming was part of an efficiency drive by General Scott Miller, who took over in September as commander of US and NATOinfo-icon forces in Afghanistan.

During a trip to Oman, Votel told the media outlet: "This is something that he started as he got into the position here and was looking at how we [can] be as efficient and as effective as we can be on the ground."

On Thursday, acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan assured NATO allies any potential US troop withdrawal from Afghanistan would take place in a coordinated manner.

Regarding President Donald Trump's concerns about endless wars, Votel said: "We don't want to fight endless wars either. We want to accomplish the mission here.

"I think the strategy that the president has allowed to get put in place here, the South Asia strategy, focused on reconciliation, has been a good one," he concluded.

PANinfo-icon Monitor/mud

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