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Jim Garamone, American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Oct. 17, 2008 –
The agreement will allow American forces to continue to operate in Iraq and train the Iraqi security forces once the United Nations Security Council mandate expires on Dec. 31.
“Admiral Mullen, General Petraeus, General Odierno and I are all satisfied that our men and women in uniform serving in Iraq are well-protected” by the agreement, Gates said.
Gates is consulting with Senate and House armed services committee leaders about the agreement, which does not require congressional approval to become effective.
“The four leaders I talked to from the armed services committees were generally positive, but clearly are looking forward to seeing the exact text,” Gates said.
White House officials discussed the text of the agreement with congressional staffers this morning.
The Iraqis want to assume control of their own security, and the draft agreement includes goals for withdrawal of American troops, if security conditions permit.