12:37 GMT29 January 2020
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - Pulling US and NATO forces out of Afghanistan would give terrorist groups the opportunity and ability to rebuild in that country and develop the capability of carrying out more mega-attacks like the ones against the United States on September 11, 2001, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs General Joseph Dunford said.

    "Leaving Afghanistan in my judgment would give the terrorist groups the space with which to conduct operations against the American homeland and its allies," Dunford told a meeting at the Washington Post newspaper on Thursday.

    That capability had been assessed a by US intelligence services as giving the terror groups the opportunity to rebuild their capabilities to carry out more attacks on the scale of the ones on September 11, 2001 against the United States, Dunford stated.

    "It is our assessment that in a period of time… [the terror groups] would have in the future the capability to do what they did on 9/11," he said.

    Almost 3,000 people were killed on September 11, 2001 when al-Qaeda hijacked four US airliners and flew two of them into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center and a third one into the Pentagon building in northern Virginia.

    READ MORE: US Dropped More Bombs on Afghanistan in 2018 Than Ever in Recorded History

    Continued US and allied commitment had supported the emergence of an Afghan-led reconciliation process with the Taliban guerrilla forces in the country, Dunford said.


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