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President Barack Obama plans to bring U.S. combat forces home from Iraq in 2010, and the United States and Iraq have agreed that all U.S. forces would leave by 2012. Although several senior U.S. officials have suggested Iraq could request an extension, the legal agreement the two countries signed last year would have to be amended for any significant U.S. presence to remain.
As recently as February, Defense Secretary Robert Gates repeated U.S. commitment to the agreement worked out with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.