USA to withdraw troops from Afghanistan by September 11

Biden to announce Afghanistan withdrawal by September 11

Biden to announce Afghanistan withdrawal by September 11

The Trump administration signed an agreement past year to remove the last of US troops by May 1 (which also would precipitate withdrawals by North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies), but that date was thrown into doubt after security officials warned that a precipitous departure could add to the instability and increase the chances of the country descending back into civil war.

Donald Trump, the president at the time, had reached an agreement with the Taliban in February 2020 to pull U.S. troops by May 2021 as long as the group promised not to support al-Qaida and other extremists.

"We're committing today to going to zero", the official said.

The official said a small number would remain beyond that date, but in the capacity of protecting the United States embassy.

Biden administration officials spoke to the press anonymously because the plans to announce US troop withdrawal are not yet public.

The president decided that the deadline for withdrawal of USA forces had to be absolute, rather than provisional on conditions inside Afghanistan as the deadline neared, the senior administration official said.

Officially, there are 2,500 USA troops in Afghanistan, although the number fluctuates and is now around 3,500.

Biden is expected to announce the decision Tuesday, according to CNN.

The news was first reported by the Washington Post.

The Taliban controls about 40 per cent of Afghanistan, according to Afghan defence officials. An exact number had yet to be decided.

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The extended timeline will allow a safe and orderly withdrawal of American troops in coordination with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies, the administration official added.

All U.S. troops will reportedly leave the country by September 11, ending U.S. involvement in a almost 20-year war that's cost the lives of more than 2,000 U.S. soldiers and 100,000 Afghan civilians and added trillions of dollars to the national debt.

It will also reignite political division over America's involvement in what many have called "the endless war".

The military withdrawal will not depend on the situation on the ground - despite fears that the Taliban could make major gains. If the coalition withdraws support, the report says, the Afghan government will struggle to control the Taliban.

The decision defies a May 1 deadline for full withdrawal under a peace agreement the Trump administration reached with the Taliban a year ago.

The Taliban has vowed to renew attacks on the US and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation if foreign troops are not out by the deadline.

Commanders have argued the Taliban has failed to meet the conditions of the peace agreement by continuing attacks on the Afghans and failing to totally cut ties with Al Qaeda and other extremist groups. He explained it would be tough to meet the deadline for "tactical reasons".

He began a review of the February 2020 agreement shortly after taking office, and has been consulting at length with his defence and military advisers as well as allies.

The May 1 deadline had already started to appear less and less likely in recent weeks, given the lack of preparations on the ground to ensure it could be done safely and responsibly.

The withdrawal will miss a May 1 deadline that had been established by the Trump administration in a deal with the Taliban previous year, which included provisions for peace talks between Afghanistan's government and the Taliban that have since faltered. "The question is when we leave".

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