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US officials: al-Qaeda could resurge in Afghanistan in 1-2 years

The black al-Qaeda flag is sprayed on the wall of a damaged school that was turned into a religious court, in Taiz, Yemen, shown in this October 16, 2017 photo. (AP Photo)
The black al-Qaeda flag is sprayed on the wall of a damaged school that was turned into a religious court, in Taiz, Yemen, shown in this October 16, 2017 photo. (AP Photo)

American intelligence officials say al-Qaeda could begin to threaten the homeland from Afghanistan within one to two years, echoing warnings that were issued prior to the US withdrawal ending its 20-year war.

Lt. Gen. Scott Berrier, who leads the Defense Intelligence Agency, gave that estimated timeframe on Tuesday while speaking at the Intelligence & National Security Summit.

David Cohen, deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency, said that the US already had detected “some of the indications of some potential movement of al-Qaeda to Afghanistan.”

Experts have long said that the Taliban still maintains ties to al-Qaeda, which took sanctuary in Afghanistan prior to the September 11, 2001 attacks.

Counterterrorism experts estimated prior to the withdrawal that al-Qaeda had several hundred fighters in Afghanistan.

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