NATO forces to leave Afghanistan collectively, US says – Times of India

BRUSSELS/BERLIN: Foreign troops below NATO command will withdraw from Afghanistan in coordination with a US pull-out by September 11, Washington’s prime diplomat stated on Wednesday, after Germany stated it could match American plans to leave after twenty years of warfare.
Around 7,000 non-US forces from primarily NATO international locations, additionally from Australia, New Zealand and Georgia, outnumber the two,500 U.S. troops in Afghanistan, however nonetheless depend on US air help, planning and management for his or her coaching mission.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken stated in Brussels that it was time for NATO allies to make good on their mantra that allies went into Afghanistan collectively and would leave collectively.
“I am here to work closely with our allies, with the (NATO) secretary-general, on the principle that we have established from the start: In together, adapt together and out together,” Blinken stated in a televised assertion at NATO headquarters.
An integral half of NATO’s present mission, Resolute Support, is to prepare and equip Afghan safety forces preventing the Islamist Taliban, which was ousted from energy by a US invasion in late 2001 and has since waged an insurgency.
With non-US troop numbers reaching as excessive as 40,000 in 2008, Europe, Canada and Australia have moved in tandem with the United States in a mission additionally offering lengthy-time period funding to rebuild Afghanistan regardless of the resurgence of Taliban-led violence and endemic official corruption within the nation.
“We will work very closely together in the months ahead on a safe, deliberate and coordinated withdrawal of our forces from Afghanistan,” Blinken stated, standing alongside NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg.
September 11 anniversary
September 11 is a extremely symbolic date as it is going to be 20 years since al Qaeda attacked the United States with hijacked airliners, triggering navy intervention in Afghanistan.
After withdrawing, the United States and NATO intention to depend on Afghan navy and police forces, which they’ve developed with billions of {dollars} in funding, to keep safety although peace talks are struggling and the insurgency is resilient.
A key motive for a coordinated withdrawal is the truth that NATO depends on US airlift capabilities and transport to transfer beneficial tools again dwelling out of landlocked Afghanistan. NATO additionally needs to keep away from any {hardware} falling into the arms of militants, as occurred after the US withdrawal from Iraq.
“A lot of a lot of armoured vehicles, helicopters and ammunition have been put into Afghanistan and four months is not a lot of time to get them home,” stated Jamie Shea, a former NATO official and now an analyst on the Friends of Europe assume-tank.
“Many European forces won’t want to abandon that equipment worth billions of dollars,” he stated, noting that some could possibly be donated to Afghan safety forces.
NATO international and defence ministers will focus on their plans in a while Wednesday through video convention.
German Defence Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer stated no NATO ally was anticipated to oppose US President Joe Biden‘s announcement, anticipated in a while Wednesday, for a whole U.S. withdrawal by September 11. “We have always said we are going in together, and we are going out together,” she stated.

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