The USA has informed allies about a further reduction of troops of the NATO mission “Resolute Support” in Afghanistan. A representative of the US government had informed that “the US will reduce its troops in Afghanistan to just under 5,000 soldiers by the end of November 2020,” the Defence Ministry and the Foreign Office informed the responsible representatives in the Bundestag.
This had already been unofficially announced to the NATO allies in June 2020. The information was available to the German Press Agency. By mid-June, the USA had already reduced its troop strength to 8600 persons according to the Ministry of Defence, but the reduction of troops would remain dependent on the “situation in the country”, the Pentagon explained. The German Armed Forces will continue to provide “Resolute Support”: “The critical capabilities of the USA, so-called enablers, will continue to be available”, the briefing states. In the view of the Federal Government, the Bundeswehr could thus continue its engagement in the north of the country without any decisive restrictions. It remains necessary to discuss all steps towards the future of Resolute Support in a joint decision-making process within NATO.
“The Federal Government maintains that any further reduction of troops should depend on substantial progress in the peace process,” the ministries said. “This also includes the Taliban reducing violence, taking a stand against international terrorism and entering into peace talks with the Afghan government: “The radical Islamic Taliban had previously reaffirmed on Monday their willingness to enter into peace talks following the conclusion of an exchange of prisoners. A Taliban spokesman said that once the release of prisoners by the Afghan government was completed, the Taliban would be ready for intra-Afghan peace talks “within a week.
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