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US Bargaining on Troop Levels in Afghanistan

(Last Updated On: February 20, 2017)

mattis_3850_c0-0-720-419_s885x516US Defense Secretary, Jim Mattis said he plans to make decisions soon to President Donald Trump on whether to increase the number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan and whether the totals should be based on military requirements rather than pre-set limits.

Mattis said he will collect his thoughts and then send recommendations to the White House.

“On the situation in Afghanistan right now again my point in talking to president Ghani and talking to our field commander, NATO field commander is the political and military appreciation to the situation. We are putting our thoughts together now, the president is waiting for my assessment  and the assessment from the intelligence community and he is open to my advice on it,” US Defense Secretary, Jim Mattis said.

Mattis met with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani in Munich on February 18.

He was scheduled to fly to Kabul on February 19, but bad weather forced him to postpone the trip.

Mattis noted he needs to “assess what the other countries in the region are doing in Afghanistan to help or hinder us in our efforts.

“First of all I’ve got to formulate where I stand, so this is the normal collection of the information and to assess what the other countries in the region are doing in Afghanistan to help our efforts there. we are still sorting that out. We all want to see everything moving smoothly. this is the best form of the government that we can come up with, so the military job is to hold the line  and hold the line and to hold the line, while our government source out the way ahead,” Mattis added.

This comes as UK defense minister has also said that more British forces are needed to prevent Afghanistan collapse.

“First, there is transnational terrorist groups are still in Afghanistan and they still pose a threat. Second if this country collapses, we here will feel the consequences, very directly, it could be three or four million young Afghan man sent out by their villages to Germany or Britain. Thirdly there are NATO values here. this was a democracy that we help to establish, seven million people voted in elections for a new future for a new Afghanistan. voted to choose a government to get out of a fragile that is at the moment. that government has asked us for help and my view is we should stay with it until as long as we can until our job is done,” said UK defense minister.

Meanwhile, the Afghan government also supports the increase number of foreign troops in Afghanistan for training, advising and consulting Afghans.

“Cooperation of the global forces with Afghan security forces is a serious need. We support the number of foreign troops level increase and we demand the world to stay in Afghanistan until the end of their mission,” said Jawid Faisal, deputy spokesman of Executive Office.

Previously, US president Donald Trump in his telephone contact with President Ghani has announced about the increase of troop levels in Afghanistan.

Edited by Zack Arya

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