Video: Obama Slows US Military Exit From Afghanistan

President Obama says during a joint news conferee with Afghanistan's President that the U.S. will keep its 9,800 U.S. troops—half of which it had planned to remove in coming months—stationed in Afghanistan through 2015.

Obama had pledged to reduce the number of remaining troops this year, and remove nearly all by the time he leaves office. However, during a closed-door meeting in the Oval Office, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani asked the president to delay the scheduled withdrawal of troops, who have been supporting the Afghan government in its fight against Taliban insurgents since the installation of a coalition government last fall.

Obama said during a joint press briefing later that afternoon that he has decided not to pull troops by 2016, and that the schedule to do so will be established later this year.

"This flexibility reflects our reinvigorated partnership with Afghanistan, which is aimed at making Afghanistan secure and preventing it from being used to launch terrorist attacks," Obama said. "Reconciliation and a political settlement remain the surest way to achieve the full drawdown of U.S. and foreign troops from Afghanistan in a way that safeguards international interests and peace in Afghanistan, as well as U.S. national security interests."

Obama said that his goal to reduce the U.S. presence in Afghanistan to a Kabul-based embassy by the end of 2016 has not changed. Neither has "our transition out of a combat role."

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