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White House Urged Not to Cut Size of Afghan Forces

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Washington – Two top American lawmakers have urged the White House not to reduce the size of Afghan national forces after 2014. In a letter to US National Security Advisor (NSA) Tom Donilon, Senators Carl Levin and Jack Reed urged the Obama administration to reconsider the plan. The US is said to be pondering a cut Afghan National Security Force (ANSF) after 2015 from its present strength of 352,000 to 230,000.

“We support the establishment of a small number for the post-2014 force. At the same time, we are convinced it will be necessary for the success of the mission … to reconsider the current plan to reduce the size of the ANSF,” the senators argued. Released on Friday, the letter says: “The savings in Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) funds as a result of the reduction in the size of the US force should help make this action affordable.”

In their letter, Levin and Reed said they were impressed with the progress that had been made just in the short time since their last visit to Afghanistan in May 2012. The transition strategy was working well, they noted. (PAN)

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