The United States is in talks with Turkey regarding its plans for Afghanistan amid US troop withdrawal from that country, Acting US Assistant Secretary of Defense for Indo-Pacific Affairs David Helvey said on Wednesday
WASHINGTON (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 12th May, 2021) The United States is in talks with Turkey regarding its plans for Afghanistan amid US troop withdrawal from that country, Acting US Assistant Secretary of Defense for Indo-Pacific Affairs David Helvey said on Wednesday.
"We are in consultations with Turkey about what their intentions are ," Helvey said.
US allies in Europe have asked the United States to slow down its withdrawal from Afghanistan, claiming that they need more time to make the exit safe, the Wall Street Journal reported citing citing unnamed officials that Turkey may depart from Afghanistan and bring home the Turkish forces that protect the airport in Kabul. Without the Kabul airport being secured, several countries have questioned whether they ought to keep open their embassies in Afghanistan, according to the report.
"We are having pretty active consultations and coordination with our allies and our partners," Helvey said. "That is something that the State Department is leading, the Department of Defense is certainly in support of that. But We are talking about what a future of a diplomatic presence would be and how will be able to - either singularly it collectively be able to provide for security for that diplomatic presence."
On May 1, the United States began withdrawing troops from Afghanistan after 20 years of war that resulted in the deaths of over 2,300 US servicemen and the deaths and injuries of hundreds of thousands of Afghans.
US President Joe Biden vowed to complete the withdrawal by the 20th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks against the United States that sparked the so-called "War on Terror" announced by then-President George W. Bush.