WASHINGTON – U.S. President Donald Trump will announce further troop withdrawals from Iraq and Afghanistan in the next few days, a senior administration official said Tuesday.
The official told reporters traveling with the president to expect an announcement Wednesday on Iraq, and on Afghanistan in the coming days.
During a meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhemi in August, Trump said American troops would leave Iraq but gave no timetable.
The talks between the pair came with attacks on American targets by pro-Iranian fighters on the rise and the Iraqi government facing calls to expel the roughly 5,000 U.S. troops deployed in the country as part of anti-jihadi efforts.
The US military withdrew from Iraq in late 2011, leaving a small mission attached to the U.S. Embassy.
But additional American forces were deployed a few years later to support Iraqi forces in their war against Islamic State, which carried out a devastating offensive in the summer of 2014.
In Afghanistan the U.S. currently has 8,600 soldiers in accordance with a bilateral agreement signed in February between Washington and the Taliban.