WASHINGTON: More than half of Americans want the United States to keep its troops in Afghanistan after ending the combat mission, says a new opinion survey released on Sunday.
The results have surprised many as earlier surveys showed a steadily decline in support for the Afghan war.
Some surveys also showed that many in the United States were against keeping a small residual force in Afghanistan after the combat mission, which ended last week.
But the Post-ABC New survey shows that this trend is reversing, particularly among the Republicans with 66pc of them now favouring the war. And 52pc Democrats and 51pc independents also want to keep a small residual force in Afghanistan.
The Republicans now control both chambers of the US Congress and their support can translate into more funds for the war.
The survey also finds that after falling to record lows, support for the Afghanistan war has been rising steadily since 2013.
At peak levels, in 2010 and 2011, the United States had 100,000 troops in Afghanistan. That number has fallen dramatically since then and will drop to 10,000 in 2015 and half that by 2016.
About half of the US troops remaining in Afghanistan are expected to help train Afghan security forces and half will focus on force protection, logistical support and counterterrorism.
The survey, however, shows that overall Americans remain downbeat over the war at the end of a13-year combat mission. A 56pc majority says it has not been worth fighting, continuing a negative streak that dates to 2010 in Post-ABC polls. But 38pc in the new survey say the war was worth the costs, up eight points from December 2013 and 10 points from a record low that July (28pc).