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Trump wants to keep 8,600 troops in Afghanistan after signing an agreement with the Taliban


The president of the United States wants to turn the page of an "endless war" while maintaining "a presence" in the country.

US military advisers work with Afghan soldiers in August 2018. James Mackenzie / REUTERS

"We will reduce our workforce to 8,600 and then we will see from there," said Donald Trump in an interview on Fox News radio Thursday, August 29. "We will still have a presence" in Afghanistan after the signing of the agreement currently negotiated with the Taliban to try to end eighteen years of war in the country.

Between 13,000 and 14,000 US troops are currently deployed in that country, where the United States intervened in 2001 to track down the al-Qaeda jihadist network responsible for the 9/11 attacks and to dislodge the Taliban then in power in Kabul. Since then, the Taliban have never stopped their insurgency and US forces mobilized up to 98,000 soldiers at the height of the fighting in 2011. The Republican billionaire has however assured that in case of a new attack against the United States Afghanistan, Washington would return "with greater force " than ever before .

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Turn the page on an "endless war"

Donald Trump is committed to turning the page of this "endless war" . For the last year, the United States has been conducting unprecedented direct negotiations with the Taliban, who have entered their home stretch in Doha, Qatar. At the heart of the negotiated agreement, a more or less significant military withdrawal from the United States, with a timetable to the key, in exchange for the insurgents' commitment to ensure that the territories they control are no longer used by Al -Qaida or other "terrorist" groups.

Inter-Afghan peace negotiations must also begin in the wake of a possible agreement between Washington and the Taliban. The US president insisted that the withdrawal would not be complete, with the maintenance of a force capable of providing "high-level intelligence" . "You have to maintain a presence," he said.

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Source: lemonde

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