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New US policy opposes arbitrary timelines

New US policy opposes arbitrary timelines

May 03, 2017 - 09:25

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): A new American policy on Afghanistaninfo-icon, pledging at least $23 billion a year to sustain the government in Kabul, rules out arbitrary withdrawal timelines.

The Trump team supports the deployment of more US and NATOinfo-icon troops to defeat the militants who have killed more than 800 Afghan troops in the first two months of 2017 alone.

A columnist for the Bloomberg news agency, Eli Lake, says: “While no troop numbers have been set, US officials told me they would envision an increase in both US and NATO forces inside the country.”

Washington is also hammering out a plan to eliminate the Afghan branch of the Islamic State (IS), or Daesh, group, which has been active in eastern and central Afghanistan.

According to media reports, the US policy acknowledges the need for an eventual peace deal with the Talibaninfo-icon. However, it suggests stepping up military attacks on militant holdouts to force the group into accepting a workable deal.

The new strategy would not set arbitrary deadlines for the pullout of international forces from Afghanistan. The Trump administration believes setting deadlines also gives rebels a timeline to sustain their activities.


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