Sunday, November 16, 2008

Iraqi ministers agree to extend U.S. military presence

U.S. soldiers walking under the "crossed swords" monument in the Green Zone in Baghdad on Sunday. (Karim Kadim/The Associated Press)

The draft approved Sunday requires coalition forces to withdraw from Iraqi cities and towns by the summer of 2009 and from the country by the end of 2011. An earlier version had language giving some flexibility to that deadline, with both sides discussing timetables and timelines for withdrawal, but the Iraqis managed to have the deadline set in stone, a significant negotiating victory. The United States has around 150,000 troops in Iraq.

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