- The Washington Times - Sunday, March 15, 2009

BAGHDAD (AP) - A U.S. military spokesman says American forces will still conduct combat operations even after they pull back to bases outside Baghdad and other cities as part of the U.S.-Iraqi security agreement.

Brig. Gen. Frederick Rudesheim says the redeployment to the periphery will actually help improve security in the capital because U.S. troops can help stop militants from using bases in rural areas to stage urban attacks.

Rudesheim told reporters Sunday that there will be “no cessation of combat operations” after the June 30 deadline to pull back most American forces from cities.

He also says U.S. military transition teams will remain in Baghdad and other cities to help train Iraqi security forces there.

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