The Biden administration said that it would be hard for the U.S. to meet the May 1 deadline to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan "in terms of tactical reasons."
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that President Joe Biden will announce the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan by Sept. 11 on Wednesday.
"Left unclear, however, is whether troop withdrawal will include removing hundreds of special operations forces that are in the country as well, which aren’t part of the official count of troop presence there," outlet Truthout commented.
"Biden has, in the past, indicated a preference for keeping special forces in the region, while also using surveillance and drone attacks to keep a U.S. military presence in Afghanistan," it added.
The decision to withdraw troops would extend U.S. military presence in Afghanistan past a May 1 deadline set in a deal between the previous administration and the Afghan Taliban.
The upcoming Sept. 11 is the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attacks that drew the United States into war in Afghanistan, the longest war in American history that caused about 2,400 U.S. military deaths.
The U.S. and the Taliban signed an agreement in Feb. 2020, which called for a full withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan by May 2021 if the Taliban meets the conditions of the deal, including severing ties with terrorist groups.
The Biden administration had concluded that the Taliban had not met its commitment under the U.S.-Taliban deal.Last month, Biden said that it would be hard for the U.S. to meet the May 1 deadline to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan "in terms of tactical reasons."
The Pentagon said that there are roughly 2,500 U.S. troops in Afghanistan, but U.S. media recently said the number did not include 1,000 more U.S. special forces in the country. Besides, about 7,000 NATO troops in Afghanistan rely on U.S. logistics and security support.