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Most U.S. troops out of Iraq by mid-December: general

WASHINGTON — The “vast majority” of remaining US troops in Iraq will be out by mid-December as the American military’s withdrawal picks up pace, a US general said Thursday. Less than 34,000 troops remain in Iraq after reaching a peak of 170,000 in 2007 during a buildup ordered by former…

White House rejects report Obama aloof on Iraq

WASHINGTON — The White House said Wednesday it was “utterly false” that President Barack Obama and his vice president had not spoken with Iraqi leaders for months before reaching a troop withdrawal decision. A report by McClatchy newspapers, citing US embassy logs, said earlier that Obama and Vice President Joe…

Iraqis voice happiness over U.S. withdrawal decision

Iraqis voiced happiness on Saturday over President Barack Obama’s declaration that US forces will leave by year-end, but some spoke of concern the pullout could further destabilise their country. The decision to withdraw all remaining soldiers in the country after nearly nine years of war, and the deaths of more…

No decision yet on future troop presence in Iraq: U.S.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration denied a news report on Saturday it had made a final decision to pull almost all U.S. troops out of Iraq by a year-end withdrawal deadline. The White House and Pentagon both denied an Associated Press report citing unnamed U.S. officials saying they completely…

Iraq ‘may bar’ U.S. trainers from 2012: top official

Iraq is considering multiple options regarding the future of the US military presence, ranging from a limited mission to no trainers whatsoever, a top official told AFP on Monday. The remarks from Ali al-Alaak, the general secretary of the cabinet, come amid an apparent impasse between Washington’s requirement of legal immunity for any US…

Iraq postpones handover of city security to police

BAGHDAD (Reuters) – Iraq is delaying handing over security to police in major cities over concerns that some forces were not ready to take on a stubborn insurgency as the last U.S. troops prepare to withdraw at the end of 2011. With its armed forces now more able to contain…

Italians vote on plan to restart nuclear power program

ROME — Italians began voting on Sunday in referendums on plans to return to nuclear power and on a law granting Silvio Berlusconi immunity in what is seen as a vital test for the embattled premier. The nuclear vote will be an important marker of popular opinion on atomic energy…

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