Acting Defense Secretary Chris Miller on Tuesday announced a U.S. troop drawdown to 2,500 in both Afghanistan and Iraq, consistent with President Trump’s promises to bring U.S. troops home and his goal to end the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
“I am formally announcing that we will implement President Trump’s orders to continue our repositioning of forces from those two countries,” Miller said. “By January 15th, 2021, our forces, their size in Afghanistan, will be 2,500 troops. Our force size in Iraq will also be 2,500 by that same date.”
Miller said the drawdown would be executed in a way “that protects our fighting men and women, our partners in the intelligence community, and diplomatic corps, and our superb allies that are critical to rebuilding Afghan and Iraqi security capabilities and civil society for a lasting peace.”
Miller said the U.S. continues to stand with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani as his government works towards a negotiated settlement with the Taliban for peace.
The move brings down the number of U.S. forces in Afghanistan from 8,600 and from the mid-5,000s in Iraq when Trump first entered office in 2017. (Read more from “Acting Defense Secretary Announces Troop Drawdown To 2,500 in Afghanistan and Iraq” HERE)