UK LEAVE AFGHANISTAN AT £1MILLION A DAY

British forces to begin their final retreat from Afghanistan

Wednesday, 11 March 2020 6:42 PM  [ Last Update: Wednesday, 11 March 2020 7:19 PM ]
 
US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
British forces suffered most of their casualties in the southern Helmand province

After nearly two decades of military intervention in Afghanistan, the UK finally looks set to depart the country following the US peace deal with the Afghan Taliban.

According to the Times newspaper, “hundreds” of British troops are set to be withdrawn from Afghanistan by “mid-July” as part of the “first phase” of the US-Taliban peace deal.

Altogether, 330 British soldiers are scheduled to leave Afghanistan by the end of the summer. Currently there are 1,100 “regular” UK military personnel stationed in Afghanistan, most of them in and around Kabul.

The full evacuation of the British troops, as part of the “second phase” of the drawdown, is dependent on the sustainability of the volatile peace agreement between the US and the Taliban leadership.

The Times defence editor, Lucy Fisher, tweeted that there is “doubt” about durability in view of the Taliban’s propensity to engage in further resistance against US and UK forces.

Lucy Fisher @LOS_Fisher

EXCL: Britain will withdraw c.330 troops from Afghanistan by mid-July.

Around 30% of the 1,100 UK personnel in Kabul are set to be pulled out in first phase of US-Taliban deal, in line with the 30% drawdown of American forces.

 

UK troops to leave Afghanistan after Taliban agree peace deal

Hundreds of British troops will be withdrawn from Afghanistan by mid-July in the first phase of the fragile US-Taliban peace deal, The Times has learnt.The UK is to remove 330 of the 1,100 regular

thetimes.co.uk
Lucy Fisher @LOS_Fisher
 

Drawdown of remaining US/British/allied forces in phase two of deal (a 14-month process) is dependent on Taliban keeping its end of bargain.

Top US commander in Middle East yesterday gave bleak assessment so far - heaping doubt on Taliban honouring deal as violence still high

 
 
 

Crucially, it is not clear at this stage if British Special Forces, notably soldiers from the Special Air Service (SAS) and its sister unit the Special Boat Service (SBS), will be withdrawn in tandem with regular forces.

Currently SAS and SBS soldiers are embedded with US forces in areas well beyond Kabul, notably in the southern Helmand province.

News that British forces are finally retreating from Afghanistan will come as a big disappointment to military families, particularly those who lost loved ones in the conflict.

Since April 2002, 456 British military personnel have been killed in Afghanistan, whilst more than 2000 have been injured.

In addition, British military veterans who served in Afghanistan continue to suffer acute psychological distress with reports that at least 14 former and serving soldiers (with service experience in Afghanistan) have committed suicide in this year alone. 

British military families are likely to take the government and the military high command to task for consistently misleading them about Britain’s muddled war aims in Afghanistan and the failed project of transforming the highly complex country into a pro-Western "democracy".  

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