Top US Commander Receives Afghanistan Drawdrown Orders

Gen. Scott Miller, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, said that he has received orders of cutting down the number of American soldiers to 2,500.

Talking to the reporters on Sunday, Mr.
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Miller expressed concerns on surge in the Taliban violence, saying that the Taliban needed to come down.

He said that the troop reduction will be done “in accordance with conditions.”

“Important for the Afghan people to understand that we have discussed this very carefully with the Afghan security forces. We still have a force that’s capable of providing the necessary support to the Afghan security forces. In some cases, it’s a direct combat support. We still have our train, advice and assist mission that takes place and we certainly have the ability to protect our force as well as meet our counterterrorism commitments,” Miller told reporters.

He strongly criticized the high level of violence by the Taliban.

“Actually, I have talked with the Taliban about this. The violence is too high. The Taliban violence needs to come down. We have had many discussions about this. What we refer to is a historic opportunity, ongoing peace process, where representatives of the republic of Afghanistan are sitting down with the Taliban and we need to make sure that from the military and security standpoint, and to provide the confidence to the people of Afghanistan, that we give this the best opportunity to be successful,” Miller said.

This comes as negotiators in Doha on Saturday reported that both sides have exchanged their lists about the agenda of the peace negotiations and that the next phase of the talks will begin on January 5.

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