Fifteen-Thousand Troops Could Be In Iraq Longer

Monday, April 9th 2007, 8:03 pm
By: News On 6

PENTAGON (AP) -- The Pentagon is considering a plan to extend the tours of duty for up to 15,000 U.S. troops serving in Iraq.

That's according to a senior official who says the plan would have to be approved by Defense Secretary Robert Gates.

The extensions are among options being considered in response to a request in the last couple of weeks by General David Petraeus. He believes the troop increase President Bush announced in January has produced some momentum in fighting violence. The official says Petraeus wants to maintain troops at that level past the summer.

Defense officials are looking at the idea of a maximum 120-day extension for five active duty brigades that would otherwise come home in the coming months.

There are currently some 145,000 U.S. troops in Iraq.