Reuters reports that Iraqi President Jalal Talabani has said the United States asked the Iraqi government for permission to maintain a troop presence there to 2015 before negotiators finally agreed on a compromise to limit the authorization to 2011. “It was a U.S. proposal for the date which is 2015, and an Iraqi one which is 2010, then we agreed to make it 2011. Iraq has the right, if necessary, to extend the presence of these troops,” Talabani said in an interview with al-Hurra television. Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki recently called for a “specific deadline” for U.S. troops to leave Iraq.
Bush administration sought to extend troop presence in Iraq through 2015.