Bush meets with Iraqi president

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Iraqi President Jalal Talabani is praising President Bush for his military surge strategy, saying, "There is no inch of Iraqi land under the control of terrorists."

At a meeting in the Oval Office today, Bush told Talibani that conditions remain difficult in Iraq, but that security gains are now allowing him to pull out troops.

Bush says "The Iraqis want there to be fewer U.S. troops." And he adds "The United States wants there to be fewer U.S. troops." But, he says, "both of us want to realize that vision based upon success."

On Capitol Hill today, Defense Secretary Robert Gates hinted at possible further troop cuts in Iraq next year. But he also said a go-slow approach is justified by several circumstances, including slow progress on the political front.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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