US President Joe Biden notified Congress on Wednesday that he will formally revoke Afghanistan’s status as a “Major Non-NATO Ally,” almost a year after the last American soldier left the country on his orders – and the Washington-backed government melted in Kabul away before the Taliban.
Biden has sent an official notice to the US House of Representatives and the Senate of his intent to rescind Afghanistan’s designation, the White House said. It was not clear when the change would take effect.
Afghanistan was originally designated as a MNNA under President Barack Obama in 2012, over a decade after the US invaded and overthrew the Taliban government in Kabul, accusing it of harboring international terrorist Osama bin Laden. The designation helped Washington fully fund Kabul’s military budget for years.
The designation is “a powerful symbol of the close relationship the US shares with those countries and demonstrates our deep respect for the friendship” for them, according to the State Department. While it provides some military and economic privileges, it “does not entail any security commitments to the designated country.”