Washington: There is "a real possibility" that Al Qaeda or ISIS could reconstitute in Afghanistan in the next six to 36 months, US chairperson of the Joint Chiefs General Mark Milley said.
At a House Armed Services Committee hearing on Wednesday, Milley said that "right this minute" the terrorist threat from Afghanistan is smaller than it was on 9/11, but that "the conditions could be set for a reconstitution of Al Qaeda and/or ISIS", according to CNN.
Milley said there is a possibility of reconstitution of terror groups in Afghanistan in the not too distant future— 6, 12, 18, 24, 36 months that kind of timeframe— for reconstitution of al Qaeda or ISIS, and it's our job now, you know, under different conditions". "But it's our job to continue to protect the American citizens against attacks from Afghanistan," he added.
Concurring with the assessment, Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin said that Al Qaeda has been degraded over time. Now, terrorist organisations seek ungoverned spaces to train, equip and thrive.
"So, there, there is clearly a possibility that can happen here, going forward."
The top military officials have appeared first time before the Senate after the Afghanistan pullout.