Australia’s remaining military personnel in Afghanistan are expected to leave alongside their NATO-led coalition colleagues, in co-ordination with a US decision to withdraw its forces before September 11.
The Biden administration has discussed with allies its plans to formally end an almost 20-year military commitment to Afghanistan, which began after the 2001 terror attacks on the US.
According to the Defence Department, “Australia currently contributes about 80 defence personnel in Afghanistan” as part of Operation HIGHROAD.
On Wednesday, Prime Minister Scott Morrison confirmed his government had been discussing withdrawal plans with the United States and other allies.
“Without going into national security matters you can be assured that the Australian government has been working closely with our American partners and allies on these issues,” Mr Morrison said.
Military insiders believe Australia will continue to provide aid to the war-ravaged country through defence co-operation programs, but the federal government will no longer provide any “in-country support”.
-more to come