US President Joe Biden will withdraw all U.S. troops from Afghanistan by Sept. 11, effectively winding down the war there two decades after it began, officials said.
Mr. Biden is expected to announce the decision formally on Wednesday, marking the second time in less than two years that an American president has set a date to end the nation’s involvement in the Afghan conflict—the longest war in U.S. history. In resetting withdrawal plans, Mr. Biden selected a symbolic target date—the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, al Qaeda terrorist attacks—to define the end of an era in which the U.S. spent trillions of dollars on efforts to counter foreign extremist threats. Officially, there are 2,500 U.S. troops in Afghanistan, although the number fluctuates and is currently about 1,000 more than that. There are also up to an additional 7,000 foreign forces in the coalition there, the majority of them NATO troops. Officials said the troop withdrawal is likely to be completed well before the Sept. 11 target date, possibly by this summer.