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Report: No Timetable Set for Withdrawing US Forces from Iraq


A published report says the Bush Administration will not create a timetable to withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq, but expect to have Iraqi forces take the lead in combat operations within months in some areas.

The Washington Post reports Sunday that instead of setting deadlines, U.S. forces will leave only after certain conditions are met.

A senior administration official told the newspaper conditions could include the level of violence, how well the government is operating, and if there is a legitimate security force "commanded and controlled by Iraqis."

Military officials are said to have drafted a plan to gradually turn counter-insurgency operations over to Iraqi forces in parts of southern and northern Iraq relatively free of violence.

Commanders hope to withdraw about 15,000 troops by the middle of this year. But more reductions are considered unlikely until at least the the end of the year.

Some information provided by AP.

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