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Top U.S. General Warns Of Tough Year In Afghanistan


General David Petraeus said troop reductions in Afghanistan will go ahead as planned.

General David Petraeus said troop reductions in Afghanistan will go ahead as planned.

The head of the U.S. Central Command, General David Petraeus, said today that the war in Afghanistan will "likely get harder before it gets easier."

Petraeus told the Senate Armed Services Committee that he expects U.S. forces will be able to reverse the momentum gained by Taliban militants.

On Iraq, Petraeus said he expects the United States will be able to reduce its forces as planned from about 97,000 to 50,000 by the end of August.

"The progress in Iraq is still fragile, and it still could be reversed,” Petraeus said. “Iraq still faces innumerable challenges, and they will be evident during what will likely be a difficult process as the newly elected Council of Representatives selects the next prime minister, president, and speaker of the council and seeks agreement on other key decisions as well."

Speaking about Iran, Petraeus said that Iranian efforts to develop a nuclear weapon appear to have been delayed "a bit," and voiced confidence that Tehran would not develop an atomic bomb this year.

Compiled from agency reports
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