Senate vote rebukes Trump on Syria, Afghanistan

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a rebuke to President Donald Trump, the Senate has voted 68-23 to advance an amendment that would oppose withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria and Afghanistan.

The amendment from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says Islamic State and al-Qaida militants still pose a serious threat to the United States and warns that “a precipitous withdrawal” of U.S. forces from Syria and Afghanistan could allow the groups to regroup and destabilize the countries.

Trump announced plans for a U.S. pullout from Syria in December, saying the Islamic State had been defeated. His intelligence chiefs say the group remains a threat.

Trump has also ordered the military to develop plans to remove up to half of the 14,000 U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

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