As US forces completed a withdrawal from Iraqi cities Tuesday six years after the US-led invasion, the top US commander General Ray Odierno refused to spell out how many would be left behind.
“June 30, 2009 marks a significant milestone for Iraq as the Iraqi security forces assume responsibility for security within the cities across the country,” Odierno told US journalists in a video-briefing from Iraq.
“In accordance with the security agreement between the United States and Iraq, US combat forces completed the withdrawal. A small number will remain in cities to train, advise, coordinate with Iraqi security forces, as well as enable them to move forward.”
But when pressed by journalists to say exactly how many US troops would be left, Odierno refused to give a number.