France to mull faster exit from Afghanistan

The French foreign minister says France and the US are considering the possibility of speeding up their timetable of withdrawing troops from Afghanistan after Osama bin Laden’s death.

France has about 4 000 troops involved in the US – and Nato-led missions in Afghanistan, and minister Alain Juppe said France and its allies would be examining how to proceed.

Speaking on France 24 TV today, Juppe said Nato’s goal in Afghanistan was not kill Bin Laden but to help its government establish authority and bring peace and democracy for its people.

Now that bin Laden is dead, Juppe said accelerating the planned withdrawal by 2014 is “one of the options we’re going to consider. The Americans are also thinking about it”.

The al-Qaeda leader died during an American special forces raid in Pakistan early Monday. 

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