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.
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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