NATO Allies decided on Wednesday (April, 14 2021) to start withdrawing forces from the Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan by May 1, with plans to complete the drawdown of all troops within a few months.
In a joint press conference with the US Secretaries of State and Defense following a virtual meeting of Allied foreign and defense ministers, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said “our drawdown will be orderly, coordinated, and deliberate”. He added: “we went into Afghanistan together, we have adjusted our posture together, and we are united in leaving together”.
Ministers also addressed Russia’s military build-up in and around Ukraine, which the Secretary General called “part of a broader pattern of Russian aggressive actions”. Mr. Stoltenberg reiterated NATO’s strong support for Ukraine, saying “we call on Russia to de-escalate immediately.”