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Bush Doesn't Expect NATO Troops In Iraq

11 June 2004 -- U.S. President George W. Bush says he does not expect NATO member countries to offer more troops to serve in Iraq.

Speaking at the end of the Group of Eight (G-8) summit in the U.S. state of Georgia, Bush said NATO could however be in a good position to offer training to Iraqi troops if requested by Iraqi leaders.

"I don't expect more troops from NATO to be offered up. That's an unrealistic expectation. Nobody is suggesting that. What we are suggesting is for NATO perhaps to help train [Iraqi security forces]. Now, that will come at the request of the Iraqi government," Bush said.

In his remarks at the end of the summit on 10 June, French President Jacques Chirac expressed opposition to a NATO mission in Iraq. Chirac said that "interference" by the western alliance in Iraq would run great risks including a confrontration between the "Christian west and the Muslim east."

The G-8 comprises Britain, Italy, France, Japan, Canada, Germany, Russia, and the United States.

(compiled from wire reports)