Biden May Extend US Troop Presence in Afghanistan: Report


KABUL: US President Joe Biden would probably prolong the stay of American forces in Afghanistan beyond May 1 deadline, a US media outlet reported on Thursday.

Last year, the Trump administration signed a peace agreement with the Taliban in Doha, under which the US will have to withdraw all its troops from Afghanistan by May 1, 2021.

According to a report from the Associated Press, Biden could postpone the withdrawal of 2,500 US troops currently deployed in Afghanistan, beyond May 1 deadline. 

Removing the remaining US troops and their supplies by May 1 will be a logistical challenge, the report said.
On March 25, Biden admitted at his first press conference as president, “It will be hard to meet the May 1 deadline. Just in terms of tactical reasons, it is hard to get those troops out.”

Meantime, AP quoted a retired Navy admiral James Stavidis, who served as NATO’s top officer from 2009 to 2013, saying it would be unwise to leave Afghanistan now.

He added: “Sometimes not making a decision becomes a decision, which seems the case with the May 1 deadline. The most prudent course of action feels like a six-month extension…”