US to leave strong intelligence in Afghanistan despite gradual troops withdrawal â€“ Trump
Washington, Jul 2 (Sputnik/UNI) The United States will continue to reduce the number of its troops in Afghanistan but leave strong intelligence in the country in order to monitor the situation there, US President Donald Trump told the Fox News broadcaster.
In the interview the US president described Afghanistan as a “lab for terrorists.”
“I would leave very strong intelligence there. We have to watch … Now, I would leave and will leave, we will be leaving very strong intelligence, far more than you would normally think because it's very important, and we can do it that way, too. But we have reduced the forces very substantially in Afghanistan,” Trump said.
Trump added that he had reduced the number of US troops, deployed in Afghanistan, from 16,000 to 9,000.
Last month, Trump said that the number of US troops in Afghanistan would be soon reduced to 8,000.
The United States and its allies launched a military operation in Afghanistan in 2001 after the 9/11 attacks, which were staged by the al-Qaeda terror group (banned in Russia), backed by then Taliban-led government of Afghanistan.
The Taliban and the United States are trying to reach a peace deal to include the withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan and assurances from the Taliban that the country will not be used as a safe haven for terrorists.