The US Secretary of Defense says Afghan forces have ‘played a key role in the Taliban’s crackdown’ as the group struggles with the threats.
The attitude of the US military in Afghanistan and its allies in NATO and the departure of their troops, which are due to end on September 11, is a major step forward for Afghanistan’s security “in the future”, U.S. security officials said Thursday.
“The Afghan military has played a major role in stopping the Taliban and I know that, what we are seeing happening is what we expect – increased pressure,” said United States Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin.
There have been nearly 80-100 Taliban protests against Afghan soldiers every day last year, while no one has opposed the US military, General Mark Milley, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, said along with Austin at the Pentagon summit.
The U.S. withdrawal is part of an agreement signed by former US President Donald Trump’s supervisors with the Taliban in February 2020 that ordered foreign troops to leave Afghanistan in exchange for Taliban security, and for the group to negotiate with Afghan government officials.
US officials and the Afghan government say the Taliban have not joined the alliance. According to the agreement, the departure is due to be completed by May 1. Last month, US President Joe Biden withdrew from the dispute and ordered all military personnel to end on September 11, the 20th anniversary of al-Qaeda in Washington and New York that sparked the war. led by the US in Afghanistan in 2001.
Meanwhile, U.S. forces have closed ground in Helmand province, about 60 planes have left the country and 1,300 weapons will be destroyed or handed over to the Afghan Army (ANSF), Milley.
On Thursday, Taliban freedom fighters seized an important pool south of Kandahar that provides irrigation water, energy and drinking water, recently to several attacks on the group, plus the worst in Helmand province, starting May 1st.
The U.S. contractors have also left the military, which could disrupt the Afghan army. Milley said it currently operates 80-90% of all air-to-air threats in support of Afghan troops. Much of the work of caring for airplanes and helicopters is done by a global contractor, and how to save without them is “one of the most important questions”, Milley said, “this will depend on the current situation and global security.”
“The goal is to keep the Afghan army afloat, and keep them rehabilitated,” Milley said.
He also said that the “dangerous predictions” of the Taliban’s victory or the fall of Kabul “were not” predictable “.
From the outset, the US will continue to support Afghanistan’s military with money and other foreign resources, Austin said.
“We will continue to cooperate with the Afghan government, and the Afghan army, and we hope that by continuing to assist them, the Afghan security forces will be able to help. “He has great potential, but in the long run, we hope this will be difficult,” said Austin.