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White House official tells reporters announcement coming on Middle East troop withdraw

White House official tells reporters announcement coming on Middle East troop withdraw
Posted at 8:00 PM, Sep 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-08 23:38:58-04

A senior administration official told pool reporters aboard Air Force One on Tuesday that President Donald Trump will be withdrawing some troops from Iraq. The official, who did not want to be identified according to White House pool reports, also said a further announcement would be coming soon involving troops in Afghanistan.

Last week, ABC News reported that the Trump administration was planning on cutting the number of troops stationed in Iraq from 5,200 to 3,500.

Last month, citing Defense Secretary Mark Esper, CNN reported the number of troops station in Afghanistan would drop from more than 8,000 to less than 5,000 by the end of the year.

The US has maintained bases in the two countries since President George W. Bush’s first term. The US began operations in Afghanistan in the weeks following the attacks on America on Sept. 11, 2001. The US then began operations in Iraq in 2003, overthrowing the Iraqi government led by Saddam Hussein.