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Taliban takeover not aforegone conclusion – US General

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“There are a range of possible outcomes in Afghanistan,” General Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said at a Pentagon news conference with Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin. “A negative outcome, a Taliban automatic military takeover, is not a foregone conclusion,” he said.

“The Afghan Security Forces have the capacity to sufficiently fight and defend their country, and we will continue to support them where necessary in accordance with the guidance from the president and the secretary of defence,” Milley said. Asked why the Taliban with 75,000 military personnel appear to be winning against the Afghan military of 300,000 with 20 years of US training and support, Milley said “warfare is not just about numbers” but also about “will and leadership” to fight and prevail.

Milley said roughly 212 district centres are under Taliban control. “That’s half of the 419 in all. And the Taliban haven’t captured yet any of the 34 provincial capitals.


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