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Afghanistan exit deadline extension ‘unlikely’ as situation gets ‘more dangerous’ – defence secretary

Written by on 24/08/2021

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace has said it is “unlikely” the 31 August deadline to pull troops out of Afghanistan will be extended as it gets “more and more dangerous”.

Speaking to Sky News, he said: “As we get closer it’s correct to say the security risk goes up, it gets more and more dangerous.

“Add-on groups and other terrorist groups like ISIS would like to be seen taking credit, would like to be seen chasing the West out of Afghanistan.”

Boris Johnson is joining a G7 leaders’ summit online today where he will call on US President Joe Biden to extend the 31 August deadline for pulling all US troops out of Afghanistan.

But the Taliban told Sky News the end of the month was a “red line” and there would be “consequences” if that was extended.

On whether Mr Biden will extend that deadline, Mr Wallace said: “I think it’s unlikely, not only because of what the Taliban has said but also the public statement from President Biden.

“It’s worth us all trying, and we will.”

 Sky News

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