United Nations, Sept 24: President Barack Obama today said the US is on course to end the Afghan war next year after having "achieved" its mission of dismantling the core of Al Qaeda that attacked America on September 11, 2001.
However, Obama warned that a splintered Al Qaeda still poses threat to peace and security. "Next year, an international coalition will end its war in Afghanistan, having achieved its mission of dismantling the core of Al Qaeda that attacked us on 9/11," Obama said in his address to the UN General Assembly here.
He said the new circumstances mean that the US is shifting away from a perpetual war footing.
"Beyond bringing our troops home we have limited the use of drones so they target only those who pose a continuing imminent threat to the United States where capture is not feasible and there's a near certainty of no civilian casualties," he said.
Obama said the US has worked with allies to end a decade of war. "Five years ago nearly 180,000 Americans were serving in harms way, and the war in Iraq was the dominant issue in our relationship with the rest of the world. Today, all of our troops have left Iraq," he said.
But he warned that terrorism continues to pose a serious threat across the world.
Obama warned that a splintered Al Qaeda still poses threat to peace
"In Kenya, we've seen terrorists target innocent civilians in a crowded shopping mall. And our hearts go out to the families of those who've been affected. In Pakistan, nearly 100 people were recently killed by suicide bombers outside a church. In Iraq, killings and car bombs continue to be a terrible part of life. And meanwhile, Al Qaeda has splintered into regional networks and militias which doesn't give them the capacity at this point to carry out attacks like 9/11, but does pose serious threats to governments and diplomats, businesses and civilians all across the globe," he said.