Not made final decision on pullout of US troops from Afghanistan yet: US Secretary of Defense

New Delhi: US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, during his visit to India stated that US President Joe Biden has not made a final decision on the pullout of US troops from Afghanistan yet.

“I’m aware that there is speculation that the President has made a decision on keeping troops there until November. President Joe Biden has not made a decision or made any announcements on when he’ll decide to remove the troops,” Austin told reporters in New Delhi on Saturday.

During the stay, Austin held talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Foreign Minister S Jaishankar.

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US media reported earlier this week that the Joe Biden administration was considering extending the US troop deployment in Afghanistan by six months instead of pulling out all personnel by the May 1 scheduled deadline.

On February 29, 2020, the United States and the Taliban movement signed a peace deal in Doha, Qatar, stipulating a gradual withdrawal of US troops as well as the beginning of intra-Afghan negotiations and prisoner exchanges. The talks were delayed multiple times until the Afghan government and the Taliban managed to agree on the prisoner exchange process as reported by Sputnik.

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