Further U.S. withdrawal from Iraq unlikely this year: U.S. general

In-depth Report:

Washington – Further withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq after the planned departure of 12,000 troops by September is unlikely this year, a U.S. general said on Monday, Xinhua News Agency informed.

Lt. Gen. Lloyd Austin, the second-in-command of U.S. forces in Iraq, told a Pentagon conference via live video-link from Iraq that the expected withdrawal of those troops is what the U.S. military is planning “for the foreseeable future.”

“We absolutely have to make sure that we have the adequate force available to provide that same degree of security that we saw at the end of January for the provincial elections,” he added, stressing the heavy security need for Iraq’s general elections in December.

On the previous day, the U.S. military announced it will pull out 12,000 troops from Iraq by September, still leaving the bulk of troops there.

Last month, U.S. President Barack Obama announced a plan to withdraw all U.S. combat forces from Iraq by Aug. 2010, leaving only 35,000 to 50,000 troops for noncombat missions.

But U.S. military commanders said the plan also gave them the flexibility to adjust troops levels around the “window of risk” surrounding Iraq’s general election in the coming December.

According to a security pact inked by the former Bush administration and the Iraqi government last year, all U.S. forces will leave Iraq by the end of 2011.

Comment on Global Research Articles on our Facebook page

Become a Member of Global Research

Articles by: Global Research

Disclaimer: The contents of this article are of sole responsibility of the author(s). The Centre for Research on Globalization will not be responsible for any inaccurate or incorrect statement in this article. The Centre of Research on Globalization grants permission to cross-post Global Research articles on community internet sites as long the source and copyright are acknowledged together with a hyperlink to the original Global Research article. For publication of Global Research articles in print or other forms including commercial internet sites, contact: [email protected]

www.globalresearch.ca contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available to our readers under the provisions of "fair use" in an effort to advance a better understanding of political, economic and social issues. The material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving it for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material for purposes other than "fair use" you must request permission from the copyright owner.

For media inquiries: [email protected]