U.S. troop decision in Iraq late summer: official

( Reuter )- The top U.S. commander in Iraq will likely take four to six weeks after a reduction in U.S. troop levels ends in mid-July before deciding if more can go home, a senior administration official said on Friday.

Gen. David Petraeus is expected to testify with Ryan Crocker, the U.S. ambassador in Baghdad, before Congress April 8-9 on their assessment of conditions in Iraq.

But Petraeus is unlikely to recommend changes to the number of U.S. troops in Iraq at that time, and opt to wait until late summer to make any further decisions.

The U.S. military is in the process of withdrawing five of 20 combat brigades, or about 20,000 troops, which would return the number of troops in Iraq to about 140,000.

That figure is still higher than the 132,000 in Iraq before President George W. Bush ordered a surge last year to curb violence in Baghdad and the western province of Anbar.

Many variables must be taken into account when Petraeus makes his recommendation on the number of troops needed in Iraq, including provincial elections due in the autumn, conflict with al Qaeda, and whether Iran supports Shi'ite groups in Iraq, the official told reporters on condition of anonymity.

"He's got to try to see his way through all that fog and make a forecast," the official said.

"What he has argued for is what's being called a pause, but essentially a reassessment period. He doesn't at this point see any interruption in the current flow from 20 to 15 brigades, which is the path we're on now," the administration official said.

"I think you can think of a period of weeks, four to six weeks, something like that. Not months, he's not thinking of 90 days here to reassess, he doesn't need that much time," he said.

The official predicted more to come before the end of the year. "I think before the end of '08 you're going to see additional drawdowns," he said.

Bush will consult Petraeus; Crocker; Adm. William Fallon, the commander of U.S. forces in the Middle East, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff in the two weeks before the Iraq congressional testimony to get different military perspectives, the official said.

Royal Caribbean cancels all Israel cruises
Royal Caribbean cancels all Israel cruises
Indian DRDO’s 1st batch of anti-Covid drug 2DG launched
Indian DRDO’s 1st batch of anti-Covid drug 2DG launched
Vladimir Putin: Both parties to Israeli-Palestinian conflict need to end violence
Vladimir Putin: Both parties to Israeli-Palestinian conflict need to end violence
Loading Bars
Latest
Uzbekistan, Russia's Kazan consider launching direct flights
Ministry discloses volume of cargo transshipped through Turkish Tekirdag port
Belarus, Azerbaijan demonstrating high level of interaction, cooperation today - President Aliyev
Azerbaijan traditionally been our friend and ally - Belarus defense minister
Export of Kazakh agro-industrial products notably grows in 2020
Kazakhstan reports multifold growth in container traffic
Turkey sees increase in exports of locally-made electrical goods to US
Ministry discloses volume of cargo transshipped through Turkish Zonguldak port
Number of client accounts in Azerbaijani banks increases
Azerbaijan to increase Virginia tobacco production
Turkey’s export of clothes to Uzbekistan up
Uzbek republican stock exchange reveals number of transactions for April 2021
New export opportunities to appear for locally produced beer – Azerbaijani minister
Georgia to establish snail meat plant, backed by Italian investment
Quarterly data on cargo shipment via Turkish Cesme port revealed
Royal Caribbean cancels all Israel cruises
Kazakhstan boosts petroleum oil exports to France
Equinor closely working with Kazakh KazMunayGas on geophysical studies
Russia's Ministry of Industry, Trade reveals data on joint projects with Turkmenistan
Uzbekistan, Netherlands consider establishing co-op in livestock breeding
Azerbaijan's ASCO opens tender for purchase of steel pipes
AZINNEX talks about Azerbaijan's potential to multiply technology exports by 2030
Russia closely following situation over Armenian-Azerbaijani border incident - MFA
Kazakhstan decreases raw sulfur production volumes
Uzbekistan notes increase in car sales
Georgia increases imports of electricity from Azerbaijan
Turkey announces substantial growth in cement exports to Uzbekistan
Iran to issue loans for dev't of beekeeping sector
Azerbaijan unveils number of citizens vaccinated on May 18
Turkey publishes quarterly data on cargo shipment via local ports from Spain
Azerbaijan confirms 432 more COVID-19 cases, 1,024 recoveries
Azerbaijan suspends import of poultry products from some countries due to bird flu
High revenues from State Oil Fund keep Azerbaijan's state budget surplus - WB
Indian DRDO’s 1st batch of anti-Covid drug 2DG launched
Kazakhstan’s Nostrum unveils oil extraction volumes for 1Q2021
Iran's private sector to start importing COVID-19 vaccine
Iran discloses volume of sprat caught from Caspian Sea
Restoring landscapes to reduce poverty gap in Georgia - WB
Georgian Credo Bank attracts funds from EFSE, GGF to support rural micro and small entrepreneurs
EBRD ready to expand co-op with Turkmenistan
Iran's NISOC to implement projects to collect flare gas
Azerbaijanis hold protest rally in front of UN Campus in Germany (PHOTO)
Revenues of Kazakhstan's Nostrum Oil & Gas down
Georgia sees increase in unemployment rate
Finnish Nokia interested in introduction of 5G technologies Uzbekistan
Turkey notes decline in export of grain, legumes to Turkmenistan
Lending to Azerbaijan's energy, chemistry & natural resources sector up
Value of Turkish chemicals export to Germany rises in 4M2021
Uzbekistan receives third batch of Chinese-Uzbek COVID-19 vaccine
Overview of Turkmen tourism sector's development
Iran’s GTC begins wheat purchasing in Razavi Khorasan Province
Lending to trade & services sector grows in Azerbaijan year-on-year
Iranian parliament issues statement on nuclear discussions
Azerbaijan competing with global leaders in export of high-tech products - AZINNEX
President Ilham Aliyev receives Belarus defense minister
Armenia's vandalism against Azerbaijan’s cultural heritage - flagrant violation of int’l law
Kazakh uranium extracting company opens tender to buy pipes
WB talks stabilization of consumer price index in Azerbaijan
Iran's capital market to increase support of refinery industry - Securities and Exchange Organization
Azerbaijan Railways announces increase in freight traffic
SME Development Centers holding free trainings for entrepreneurs in Azerbaijan
Vladimir Putin: Both parties to Israeli-Palestinian conflict need to end violence
Azerbaijan shares data on 4M2021 oil exports to Israel
Iranian contractors awaiting to build railway in Iraq's Basra
Ministry discloses volume of cargo transshipped through Turkish Gemlik port
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for May 18
Turkmenistan may participate in new transport corridor
Austrian companies eye cooperating with Uzbekistan in energy sector
Total annual energy investment to surge by 2030
Iranian energy minister talks electricity generation, water shortages
Volume of cement imported by Austria from Turkey disclosed
Ministry discloses volume of clothes exported from Turkey to Turkmenistan
Georgian Prime Minister to visit Spain
Azerbaijan's liberated Zangilan district to become transport hub of region - CAERC
Turkmenistan invites Russia's Tatarstan to take part in country's infrastructure projects
Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan eye increasing potential of transport corridor to China
Iran’s PMO unveils volume of cargo loaded, unloaded in Jask port
Iran boosts aluminum ingots production
Electricity facilities put into operation in Iran
Kazakhstan's export to EAEU states grows over six years
Demand of Azerbaijani banks for foreign currency surges - Central Bank
Decisions on troop interaction clarified for Azerbaijan's military exercises (PHOTO)
Value of Iran’s exports grows
Solar panel stations launched in Iran's Kerman Province
France decreases imports of Kazakh-made foods y-o-y
Azerbaijan starts construction of infrastructure of Horadiz-Aghband railway (VIDEO)
SMEs dominate Kazakh exports to EAEU
Azerbaijan starts work to prepare tourist routes in liberated territories
Lending via credit letters in Azerbaijan shrinks
Kazakhstan boosts imports of Turkish chemicals
Design work at Uzbekneftegaz GTL plant completed
Azerbaijan names volume, amount of oil supplies to Spain from early 2021
OMV Petrom completes selling off its subsidiaries in Kazakhstan
Preparations for 2021 F1 Azerbaijan Grand Prix nearing completion in Baku
World Bank to finance development of water services sector in Uzbekistan
Turkey doubles crude oil imports from Kazakhstan
Monday.com files for Nasdaq IPO
Armenian ex-minister of transport & communication detained
Georgia reports 1,562 coronavirus cases for May 18
Georgia sees increase in number of cattle
All news