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Report on US policy in Iraq released, urging troops pull out by 2008


Source: | 12-07-2006 08:40

Special Report:   Iraq in Transition

The Iraq Study Group has released its long-awaited report on US policy in Iraq. It's recommending the US pull combat troops out of Iraq by 2008 and calling for renewed diplomacy to halt the Iraqi crisis.

The Bipartisan Iraq Study Group has released its report on recommended US policy in Iraq.

It's urging enhanced diplomacy, so the US can withdraw all troops not involved in training or support by the first quarter of 2008.

The panel gave an early briefing to US President, George W. Bush, in an early morning meeting on Wednesday.

The report paints a grim picture of Iraq, three years after a US-led invasion toppled ex-President Saddam Hussein.

Lee Hamilton, co-chair Iraq Study Group said, "The situation in Iraq is grave and deteriorating. Violence is increasing in scope and lethality. Attacks on US forces and US casualties continue at an alarming rate. The Iraqi people are suffering great hardship. The democratically elected government that replaced Saddam Hussein is not adequately advancing the key issues of national reconciliation, providing basic security or delivering essential services. Economic development is hampered. The current approach is not working and the ability of the United States to influence events is diminishing."

The report warns that if the situation continues to worsen, chaos will ensue that could trigger the collapse of the Iraqi government and a humanitarian catastrophe.

It also underlines the threat Iraq poses to the global standing of the US, adding that the situation could lead to Americans becoming more polarized.

The report is stressing the need for Iraqis to take on a larger military role.

It also urges direct US engagement with Syria and Iran that can help stabilize Iraq.

President Bush has pledged to treat each proposal seriously and act in what he believes is a timely fashion.

Bush said, "I have told the members that this report, called "The Way Forward" will be taken very seriously by this administration. This report gives a very tough assessment of the situation in Iraq. It is a report that brings some really very interesting proposals and we will take every proposal seriously and we will act in a timely fashion."

However, the White House has also made clear that it has begun its own review of Iraq policy, and that Bush is not bound by the panel's proposals.


Editor:Du Xiaodan