President Ashraf Ghani has sent a secret letter to US president Donald Trump via Alice Wells, the principal deputy assistant secretary for South and Central Asia, who had been visiting Kabul, according to reports.


President Ashraf Ghani has sent a secret letter to US president Donald Trump via Alice Wells, the principal deputy assistant secretary for South and Central Asia, who had been visiting Kabul, according to reports.
Unnerved by fears of a rushed American deal with Taliban insurgents, President Ashraf Ghani sent a letter on Tuesday to President Trump offering him reduced costs for keeping United States troops in the country, MSN quoted New York Times as saying.

The letter, confirmed by three officials and described by one who had seen its contents, is among the strongest signs yet that Mr. Ghani is worried about the consequences of an abrupt American withdrawal from an intractable war that has lasted nearly two decades.
Mr. Ghani has made no secret of his concern about a hasty American exit by an increasingly impatient Mr. Trump, fearing it could unravel the fragile Afghan state and lead to a renaissance in power by the Taliban, which have been steadily gaining territory, the source said.

The report said that Mr. Ghani and his aides had long discussed how to deal with any possible change of plans by the Trump administration.
The official said the language of Mr. Ghani’s letter was broad — asking for teams from both sides to discuss details of where costs could be reduced, and how the troop levels could be brought down from the current 14,000 to a “more efficient level.”

The official said the possibilities they had envisioned could save as much as $2 billion a year for the United States, drawing from areas such as maintenance contracts, and reduce the level of American troops to as low as 3,000.
It was not immediately clear on Tuesday whether Mr. Trump had received the letter yet.


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