President Donald Trump has decided to nominate foreign policy expert William Ruger to be the next United States ambassador to Afghanistan, the White House said in a statement on Friday, APA reports citing CNN.
Some US officials, the Wall Street Journal reported earlier in September, view the decision to pick Ruger as a sign that Trump wants to ensure troops are removed from Afghanistan quickly. Ruger, in a piece in The National Interest in May, wrote that Trump correctly concluded that a "full and speedy withdrawal" of US troops is imperative.
"Today, President Donald J. Trump announced his intent to nominate the following individual to a key position in his Administration: William Ruger, of Virginia, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan," the statement said.
Ruger serves as Vice President for Research and Policy at the Charles Koch Institute and Vice President for Foreign Policy at Stand Together, the White House said.
In the past, he took positions in several universities and served on non-profit boards, including the board of Directors of the Center for the National Interest and the Advisory Board of the Policing Project at the New York University school of Law.
Ruger is also a veteran of the Afghanistan War and an officer in the US Navy Reserve, the statement read.
On Tuesday, a senior administration official said Trump would announce a reduction in the military presence in Afghanistan in the coming days. Earlier this month, Trump said he wanted to reduce the level of troops in Afghanistan to 4,000 by US election day, November 3.
The United States signed a peace deal with the Taliban in February that stipulated a phased 14-month troop withdrawal period and a ceasefire between both sides, effectively ending the confrontation which began in 2001. The US-Taliban agreement also envisioned a mutual release of prisoners between the Kabul administration and the militant group, and the beginning of the intra-Afghan talks.