Washington: The man tapped to take over as the top US commander in Afghanistan is endorsing the size and pace of the 30,000 troop withdrawal laid out by President Barack Obama last week.
Marine Lt Gen John Allen says the drawdown will impress on Afghan leaders that they must urgently increase the size of their own security forces to take over as US troops leave.
Other military leaders, including the man he would replace, General David Petraeus, have said Obama`s drawdown plan was riskier and more aggressive than they would have liked.
Allen says a key US challenge will be filling a shortfall of hundreds of trainers and mentoring teams.
His comments came in a questionnaire he completed for his nomination hearing on Tuesday.