Ali al-Dabbagh made the comments following a meeting in Baghdad on Monday between Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and Senator Barack Obama.
The timeframe is similar to Obama’s proposal to pull back combat troops within 16 months. The Iraqi government has been trying to clarify its position on a possible troop withdrawal since al-Maliki was quoted in a German magazine last week saying he supported Obama’s timetable.
Maliki had tried softening his position after the White House called him to reprimand him because the White House was embarrassed that the Iraqi leader favored Obama’s position.
The Iraqi government has now come back to pretty much what was quoted in the German magazine.
This is the type of confusion created when one government (Bush administration) tries to manipulate another. (Maliki’s administration).