Taliban Welcomes Trump’s Tweet on Promise to Bring U.S. Troops in Afghanistan ‘Home by Christmas’

The Taliban has welcomed the tweet by President Donald Trump pledging for U.S. troops in Afghanistan to return home before the end of the year, amid concerns that such a move could jeopardize the deal agreed earlier this year aimed at ending two decades of conflict.



a man in a military vehicle: U.S. soldiers arrives at the site of a car bomb attack in Kabul on September 24, 2017. President Donald Trump has vowed to have American troops there back home by Christmas.


© WAKIL KOHSAR/Getty Images
U.S. soldiers arrives at the site of a car bomb attack in Kabul on September 24, 2017. President Donald Trump has vowed to have American troops there back home by Christmas.

Just hours after Trump’s national security adviser, Robert O’Brien, had said that U.S forces in the country would be halved to 2,500 by early 2021, Trump tweeted on Wednesday: “We should have the small remaining number of our BRAVE Men and Women serving in Afghanistan home by Christmas!”

The Doha agreement struck in the Qatari capital between the Taliban and the U.S. in February was intended to allow the

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Trump says remaining troops should be home from Afghanistan by Christmas

In its own deal struck earlier this year with the Taliban, the Trump administration said it would remove all U.S. forces from Afghanistan by next spring if the Taliban complied with certain conditions, including a reduction in violence and the Taliban severing all relations with al-Qaeda militants.

Afghan government officials have said they see no evidence of such a break, and the level of violence has sharply increased in Afghanistan in recent months.

U.S. military officials last month announced that U.S. troop deployments would be reduced from about 8,600 to about 4,000 this fall but have said a full withdrawal would come only if conditions permit. U.S. forces in Afghanistan peaked around 100,000 under the Obama administration. Although they had fallen dramatically by the time Trump took office, he added several thousand early in his term on the recommendation of the military.

Earlier in the day, White House national security

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U.S. troops in Afghanistan should be ‘home by Christmas’: Trump

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – All U.S. troops in Afghanistan should be “home by Christmas,” President Donald Trump said on Wednesday, just hours after his national security adviser said Washington would reduce its forces in Afghanistan to 2,500 by early next year.

A landmark deal between the United States and the Taliban in February said foreign forces would leave Afghanistan by May 2021 in exchange for counterterrorism guarantees from the Taliban, which agreed to negotiate a permanent ceasefire and a power-sharing formula with the Afghan government.

Trump and other officials have said the United States will go down to between 4,000 and 5,000 troops in Afghanistan around November.

Beyond that, officials have said that a reduction will depend on conditions in Afghanistan.

On Twitter, Trump said: “We should have the small remaining number of our BRAVE Men and Women serving in Afghanistan home by Christmas!”

It was unclear whether Trump was giving

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Trump tweets troops in Afghanistan “should” be home by Christmas

President Trump on Wednesday tweeted that the U.S. troops in Afghanistan “should” be home by Christmas, but it’s unclear whether the president meant he’s ordering troops home, or rather he merely wants them to come home. 

Such a move would be against the current advice of his military commanders, who do not believe it is safe to go below 4,500 troops unless the Taliban breaks with al Qaeda and reduces the level of violence. In February, the U.S. and the Taliban signed a deal for American troops to withdraw in the spring of 2021. 

“We should have the small remaining number of our BRAVE Men and Women serving in Afghanistan home by Christmas!” the president tweeted Wednesday evening, shortly before the vice presidential debate. 

The administration already announced the U.S. would be pulling 1,200 troops from Iraq, as a part of the president’s follow through on his campaign promise

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