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Immediate Release

Readout of Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III's Meeting With Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani

Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III hosted today at the Pentagon His Excellency Ashraf Ghani, President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, and Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, Chairman of Afghanistan’s High Council for National Reconciliation. 

During the visit, Secretary Austin reaffirmed the United States’ commitment to an enduring U.S.-Afghan defense relationship. The Secretary also stressed that the Department is deeply invested in the security and stability of Afghanistan, and reiterated U.S. support for the continued competency of the Afghanistan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF).

President Ghani, Dr. Abdullah and Secretary Austin discussed the winding down of the Resolute Support Mission and with that the transition to a new relationship with Afghanistan and with the Afghan forces. Both sides reaffirmed the importance of ensuring that Afghanistan never again serves as a safe haven for terrorists who threaten the Afghan people, the United States, or our Allies. 

Secretary Austin and President Ghani each acknowledged the shared sacrifices of both the U.S. and Afghan forces, and the impact these sacrifices have had on our two nations and the families of the fallen.