Stephanie Young, 202-225-3130
WASHINGTON, DC - House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today in response to President Obama's announcement on troop levels in Afghanistan:
“Today’s announcement that our combat mission in Afghanistan will end later this year represents a responsible plan to bring our troops home by 2016. Since the beginning of combat operations in Afghanistan, U.S. troops have performed extraordinarily and courageously, and it is time to bring them home, so many having endured by multiple tours of duty, and the loss of comrades in arms, who gave what Lincoln called the ‘last full measure of devotion’ to a grateful nation. Now it is up to Afghanistan’s leaders to sign a bilateral status of forces agreement to enable this plan to move forward and complete the transition of security responsibility to Afghan forces.
“I will continue to work with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to ensure that, with this plan in place, we can achieve our goals of preventing the return of al-Qaeda, promoting the growth of democratic institutions, and enabling women and girls to pursue the education and opportunities they deserve. We must make certain that our returning veterans have the quality health care and transition help they have earned through their service, and that those with loved-ones still serving overseas have the support they need to complete their mission and return safely home.”