Mattis: National Security To Settle On Afghanistan Policy In ‘Very Near Future’

Alex Brandon/AP

WASHINGTON (AP) — Defense Secretary Jim Mattis says President Donald Trump is gathering his national security team to attempt again to settle on a new Afghanistan policy.

In remarks at the State Department, Mattis told reporters the talks Friday at the Camp David presidential retreat in Maryland will “move this toward a decision.” He did not predict a decision but repeated a statement he made on Monday at the Pentagon that a decision is likely in “the very near future.”

The administration has been wrestling with how to proceed in Afghanistan, where the U.S. has been bogged down in war for nearly 16 years. The conflict has been stalemated for more than a year; Mattis is believed to favor sending a few thousand more U.S. troops, but others in the administration oppose that.