Friday, November 04, 2011

Obama to host Iraq's Maliki before troop pullout

WASHINGTON | Fri Nov 4, 2011 12:59pm EDT
(Reuters) - President Barack Obama will host Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki at the White House on December 12, the White House said on Friday, just weeks before the last American troops are slated to leave the country.
The United States has about 40,000 troops in Iraq. Obama said last month that they will be withdrawn by December 31 according to the terms of a 2008 bilateral security pact. "The two leaders will hold talks on deepening the comprehensive strategic partnership between the United States and Iraq," White House spokesman Jay Carney said in a statement.
The talks come just weeks after lengthy negotiations between officials in Washington and Baghdad failed to reach an accord to keep thousands of U.S. troops in Iraq as that country tries to recover fully from the lengthy war.



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