President Barack Obama plans to leave around 8,400 U.S. troops in Afghanistan when he finishes his term, people briefed on the plan said Wednesday, an increase from his previous plan that reflects the difficulty for the U.S. in drawing down the conflict.
Obama had planned to drop troop levels from 9,800 to 5,500 troops by the end of 2016. But a Taliban resurgence has led Washington to rethink its exit strategy.
The individuals briefed on the plan spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to disclose the numbers before the president’s announcement.
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