Britain’s Afghan Troop Cuts Smaller Than Expected

3,800 to Leave Through End of 2013

As expected, British Prime Minister David Cameron has laid out his plan for future troops cuts in Afghanistan today, though the number of cuts was surprisingly fewer than was initially expected.

Cameron announced that 3,800 of Britain’s 9,000 troops will leave by the end of 2013, and while he wasn’t exact on plans for 2014, he added that a “relatively even” number would also leave that year.

Initial reports over the weekend from people familiar with the discussion had predicted that Cameron would announce at least 4,500 troops to leave Afghanistan by the end of Summer 2013, with more leaving by the end of the year and only a small portion remaining in 2014.

Cameron offered no explanation for why the number was less than what was initially rumored. Several officials have pressed for Cameron to dramatically speed the pullout, saying there really is no reason to keep troops in Afghanistan in the first place.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of