Bush to recall 6000 troops from Iraq by end-2007

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Washington, Sep 16: President Bush has said that he will bring back six-thousand American troops home from Iraq by the year end as security situation is improving their. ''The principle that guides my decisions on troop levels is 'return on success''', said the President. ''The more successful we are, the more troops can return home and I will ensure that our commanders on the ground have the troops and flexibility they need to defeat the enemy'', the President said in his weekly radio address today.

This mechanism would leave 130,000 US troops in Iraq by the middle of next year.

Their is evidence of improving security in Iraq with decline in sectarian violence in Baghdad and break-up of Iranian-backed militant groups.

''The success of a free Iraq is critical to the security of the United States and if we were to be driven out of Iraq, extremists of all strains would be emboldened'', the President said.

'' Al Qaida could find new recruits and new sanctuaries with a failed Iraq increasing the likelihood of our forces returning back and confronting extremists more entrenched and more deadly'', added the US President.

Democrat Congressman Tom Lantos criticised the President's decision to send more troops to Iraq earlier this year.

Iraq's leader failed to reconcile political differences and failed to take advantage, was the contention of the US President on this charge.

The Democratic Party, which enjoys majority in both Houses of Congress, wants more troops home sooner. The party plans to put more pressure for troop recall through legislative mechanism.

Meanwhile Defense Secretary Robert Gates had yesterday hinted at the possibility of a drastic reduction in the US troop strength in Iraq, sharper than what President Bush had announced in his address to the nation on Thursday.

The US troop levels in Iraq could be cut to about 100,000 by the end of next year, said the Defence Secretry talking to newsmen.

Presently, there are about 169,000 American troops in Iraq.


UNI

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