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NATO Prepared To Withdraw All Troops from Afghanistan.

! WASHINGTON, Rabi'II 27, 1435, Feb 27, 2014, SPA -- NATO defense ministers convened a two-day meeting here Wednesday with a renewed warning that they are prepared to withdraw all of their troops from Afghanistan without a signed security agreement.

"We all know the facts," NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said as ministers moved behind closed doors. If there is no security agreement between Afghanistan and the United States, he said, there would be no NATO agreement with Afghanistan, and "there will be no NATO troops in Afghanistan after 2014." U.S. troops comprise about two-thirds of the international force in Afghanistan, which is now down to about 50,000 and is on its way to a complete combat withdrawal by the end of this year. That ratio would remain roughly the same under a plan drawn up by Gen. Joseph Dunford, the U.S. and NATO commander, to leave a total force of 8,000 to 12,000 behind for training and counterterrorism missions next year and possibly beyond.

--SPA 11:56 LOCAL TIME 08:56 GMT

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Publication:Saudi Press Agency (SPA)
Geographic Code:9AFGH
Date:Feb 27, 2014
Words:192
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