The Pentagon says it is reducing its counterterrorism forces in Africa and is studying whether to make similar moves elsewhere in the world.
The stated reason for a planned 10 percent cut in the counterterrorism forces of U.S. Africa Command is to shift the military’s attention toward security threats from Russia and China. That is in line with a revamped defense strategy announced in January by Defense Secretary Jim Mattis.
The Africa reductions will amount to roughly 700 troops and their associated military support.
The Pentagon said the reductions will not touch U.S. forces in Somalia, Djibouti or Libya. The cuts will be mainly in West Africa, where U.S. forces operate in relatively small numbers in Cameroon, Nigeria, Niger and others. Last October four U.S. soldiers were killed in Niger.