Biden says U.S. will leave Afghanistan but likely not by May 1 deadline

U.S. President Joseph R. Biden Jr. on Thursday stood by his promise that the United States will withdraw remaining troops from Afghanistan but conceded that “it’s going to be hard to meet the May 1 deadline” for withdrawing troops that was established in a peace deal made with the Taliban under President Trump.

Speaking at his first press conference in Washington D.C., President Biden cited “tactical reasons” for his doubtfulness but asserted that there are ongoing talks between his administration and NATO allies regarding the situation in Afghanistan, saying, “We’re in consultation, I said, with our allies and partners in how to proceed.”

During his campaign, Mr. Biden asserted that “it is past time to end these forever wars,” referring to prolonged U.S. involvement in the Middle East.

The Untied States began operations in Afghanistan shortly after the September 11, 2001 attacks on American soil by terrorist organization Al Qaeda and has maintained a presence in the country for the past two decades.

“We will leave. The question is when we leave,” said President Biden during his Thursday press conference.

When asked if there will be U.S. troops in Afghanistan next year, the commander-in-chief said, “I can’t picture that being the case.”

However, the President asserted that the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan is not something that should be done haphazardly but should be done tactically, saying, “If we leave, we’re going to do so in a safe and orderly way.”

Noah Pitcher is a global politics correspondent for Today News Africa covering the U.S. government, United Nations, African Union, and other actors involved in international developments, political controversies, and humanitarian issues.

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