President Joe Biden has confirmed the US military is not ready to meet a May 1 pullout deadline in Afghanistan, previously agreed to by the Trump administration and the Taliban.
Biden cited “tactical reasons” for May 1 being a difficult date to commit to.
“It is not my intention to stay there for a long time,” the president said, adding that more time may be needed so troops can leave in a “safe and orderly way.”
“We will leave. The question is when we’ll leave,” he added.
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Asked whether troops should expect to be in Afghanistan next year, Biden would only say it was an unlikely scenario, suggesting that a date before the end of the year could be the next official pullout deadline.
Reports that the US will not be meeting the May 1 deadline, agreed as part of Donald Trump’s Doha Agreement, surfaced earlier. In response, Taliban officials promised a “reaction” if the previous deadline was not met by the US.
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