© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin speaks during President Biden’s visit to the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said Friday there needs to be an immediate reduction in violence in Afghanistan, adding that no decision has been taken on the future of US forces in the country.
“I urge all parties to choose the path to peace. The violence must now decrease,” Austin told reporters.
President Joe Biden’s administration is conducting a review of an agreement signed with the Taliban in February 2020 that is expected to determine whether the deadline for withdrawing the remaining 2,500 U.S. troops from America’s longest war will be met.
“Regardless of the outcome of our review, the United States will not make a hasty or disorderly withdrawal from Afghanistan,” Austin added.
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