David Cameron was warned by MPs yesterday that any premature withdrawal from Afghanistan could imperil the soldiers left behind.
The Commons Defence Committee said pulling out more than a few hundred troops could weaken remaining forces.
Troop numbers are expected to be cut by 500 to 9 000 by September next year.
The committee warned: “A more significant drawdown, however, would have to involve a complete battle group. Weakening any battle group to withdraw numbers would be a dangerous move.
“It is important that the Government’s clear determination to withdraw combat forces should not undermine the military strategy by causing the Afghan population to fear that the international coalition might abandon them or by allowing the Taliban and others to think that all they have to do is bide their time until Isaf (International Security Assistance Force) forces withdraw.”