Democrats claim immediate withdrawal from Iraq

An influential House Democrat who voted for the Iraq war called Thursday for the immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, another sign of growing unease in Congress about the conflict.

Rep. John Murtha, a Pennsylvania Democrat, called for the United States "to immediately redeploy U.S. troops consistent with the safety of U.S. forces."

"With a U.S. troop redeployment, the Iraqi security forces will be incentified to take control," Murtha said.

The decorated Vietnam War veteran is a close adviser to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. For months, Pelosi has pushed for the Bush administration to outline an exit strategy, although she has stopped short of calling for a pullout troops.

Some Senate Democrats have called for immediate or phased withdrawal.

"The war in Iraq is not going as advertised. It is a flawed policy wrapped in illusion," the AP quoted Murtha as saying.


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