Donald Trump And Melania Trump Visit Soldiers In Afghanistan By Surprise For Thanksgiving

(CNN) – US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump arrived in Afghanistan on Thursday to make a surprise Thanksgiving visit to American soldiers, their first trip to that country.

It is the second visit of the president and first lady to US soldiers abroad in a war zone after a trip to Iraq at the end of last year. This visit comes amid unprecedented tensions between the president and senior military officers after the dismissal of Marine Secretary Richard Spencer.

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There are about 12,000 soldiers currently serving in Afghanistan in a conflict unleashed by the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, which has claimed more than 2,300 American lives and cost billions of dollars in taxpayers.

– Barbara Starr and Nicole Gaouette of CNN contributed to this report.

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